I was subject to racist and sexist harassment while working for the Police. One particular male police staff who was on the same pay grade came across as weird and made my life there hell to the point I never want to work for the Police ever again.
This male was always staring while I was trying to do my work and others witnessed him doing it too. I heard he nearly pushed another female colleague out the way when we sat down for a team meeting as he wanted to sit nearby. He was always making inappropriate comments, once asking our line manager “Did you enjoy your threesome?” after a meeting between him and two female managers. He made other comments but I’m not going to list them all as they make me physically sick going over them.
He also had a particular strange obsession with China and Chinese people, claiming he had a long term Malaysian girlfriend. Once he told me he called her to ask what language she speaks. I tried to see if he made these comments to anyone else of any ethnic minority but I didn’t hear any. Once he said that no one corrupt would get into our unit and get past “Developed (DV) vetting” and pointing at me, something along the lines of “Vetting won’t screen out Russian and Chinese spies working in our department.” Our line manager was sitting there but didn’t challenge him, later he claimed he was not listening and didn’t hear the comment fully. I felt I had I had to laugh it off due to the macho Police culture where crying is seen as wrong and I didn’t want him to know he had got a reaction from me which would encourage him more. I complained to the senior manager [redaction made for legal reasons] and asked to move desks but my line manager [redaction made for legal reasons] had a go at me when [they – redaction made for legal reasons] was off saying I was “ultra sensitive” and almost shouted, trying to make me guilty that I had done the wrong thing reporting it. He said angrily I had got them both in trouble and that the staff member was going to be sacked. He tried to claim that this man having a Malaysian girlfriend doesn’t make him racist and I don’t know him well enough to say he is. I was upset and angry, that all this man got was an informal verbal warning and got away with what he said. Apparently he’s been working in the force for 10+ years and people say he’s always been like that yet it seems no one can be bothered to deal with him. I also heard that the managers were joking about the situation afterwards, where one who was his friend was laughing “Why would he want Chinese when he’s got Thai?”
I also thought he was stalking me as he always seemed to be “in my space” by standing around the water cooler or nearby if I had gone to the toilet. It made me feel I was being paranoid. Even after moving desks, when management weren’t around I would see him near my desk talking to others and I think I heard him once saying “Too many Chinese in the building.” I used to go to the gym after work and he would turn up, using an exercise machine next to me when there were plenty of other machines available. I had to change the times I was going to the gym to avoid him.
This experience was so bad I never want to work with the Police again and was very grateful I managed to find a better job with more robust management. I did try to take further action but heard nothing back or was told it has to be dealt with internally by the Police who from this experience, I can’t see them dealing with it seriously. It does still make me angry especially when I hear bad news about Police officers, I feel like there’s never any focus on the civilian staff. I also feel like no one wants to help me and it gets me down when I feel there’s nothing I can do.
Constabulary: Metropolitan Police Service
Timespan: 2018 – 2019
Did you report it to the police?: No
Your ethnicity: Asian and Minority Ethnic
Have you experienced suicidality due to this?: Thoughts/feelings
Are you disabled as defined under the Equality Act 2010?: No