Rights groups quit police body over stun gun use against BAME people

A number of civil society organisations have quit the National Police Chiefs’ Council’s independent Taser advisory group in protest, claiming no meaningful action is being taken to address the disproportionate use of stun guns against BAME people.

Use of the weapons rose by 39% last year as growing numbers of police officers were equipped with them. But a new analysis of Home Office figures found black people in England and Wales were almost eight times more likely to have stun guns used against them by police than white people.

In a joint resignation letter to the NPCC, the human rights groups Liberty, Inquest, StopWatch and the Open Society, and the policing expert Dr Mike Shiner said that a decision announced privately in February to absorb a planned assessment of the disproportionate impact of the use of stun guns on minority ethnic people into an officer safety review demonstrated that concerns were not being taken seriously.

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