Hannah | Casual misogyny

This is not a story of abuse or assault but just the alarming racism and misogyny normalised in the police force.

My car broke down on a high speed road and the RAC advised I call the police first. One officer was so polite to me on the phone with my English sounding name but when he arrived and saw I was not white he became overbearing and threatening. Racism. As if women don’t already feel unsafe with the police. Standing over me and lecturing me about standing too far from my vehicle, I felt cold, sick and threatened. My husband was parked a little way away and I said I would just get my coat -it was colder than I’d realised. There were 2 male officers who tried to get me to sit in their car with them -I said I didn’t want to do that. I absolutely didn’t feel safe. Why would they not let me get my coat and sit in my car? Misogyny -removing my choice on the ridiculous pretence of road safety. As if my location would make any difference.

This is what happens when you take young men who want a tiny bit of power and surround them with misogyny and racism. The murder rate continues as they dismiss women’s rights to be safe. They make mistakes every day over what that means. And it isn’t sitting freezing in a car. They continued to pester me, tapping on the window whilst I sat there shaking and crying. “Turn your engine on” well I actually have to pay for my own fuel. The RAC chap was really pleased I’d conserved fuel and battery. The police training is so inadequate for how to communicate in a supportive and respectful way with people who don’t feel safe with them.

No wonder violence escalates -they make so many situations worse. I called the emergency police line again to say I didn’t feel safe. They checked the identity of the police and said they would ‘pass on a report.’ Typing on computers whilst someone is being raped or murdered. I did notice they backed down when the RAC chap appeared, a middle aged white man, so kind, competent and just normal. These youngsters are easily led and what they’re learning in the police force is how to threaten women and treat them as less than human.

Constabulary: Kent Police

Timespan: Nov 2022

Did you report it to the police?: Yes

Your ethnicity: Asian and Minority Ethnic

Have you experienced suicidality due to this?: No

Are you disabled as defined under the Equality Act 2010?: No

illustration by Danny Noble

Share this story