- Shelley Collins; Director of Just Resources International Ltd
- Ivan Kayima; CEO and Co-Founder of Spiela
- Selena Carty; Founder of BlackPoppyRose
- Orin Lewis OBE; Co-Founder and Chief Executive of ACLT (Afro Caribbean Leukemia Trust)
Janet Hills; Metropolitan Black Police Association Chair;
It was fantastic to see an improved turnout for the 22nd AGM of the Metropolitan Black Police Association. Lots of enthusiastic people were in attendance and whilst we didn’t quite fill the room.. the sentiment of many of our BAME officers and staff was present.
It was encouraging to see new Executive Committee elected and I am sure that this new blood will carry on the fantastic work of those that have gone before us. I am grateful for all of their hard work and efforts. I am humbled by the confidence shown in me by our members by my re-election and look forward to the great work we will achieve as an Executive Committee.
We welcomed our guests, Sophie Linden; Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, the Commissioner, Shelley Collins from Just Resources and Ivan Kayima from SPIELA and enjoyed their engaging and informative participation.
Whilst we didn’t get all the answers we wanted on the day we are confident that we can work with Sophie and the Commissioner in the near future to make improvements for all and in particular BAME officers and staff.
With the help of all our members and the newly elected Executive Committee the Metropolitan Black Police Association can and will really make a difference to our internal and external communities”
In order to express my feelings about attending the 22nd AGM of the MetBPA, it is only right that I give you a little background
The history of my involvement with the Metropolitan Police goes back along way and my history with eh METBPA much shorter. I was on the staff of the Home Office Specialist Support Unit at Turvey which began the work on training the police after Home Office Circular 87 of 89 recommended the setting up of the unit. – post Brixton Riots. I was on staff there for 7 years and then started working with the Metropolitan Police in developing the Borough-wide Community and Race relations training. After designing, developing and delivering the successful pilot at Hammersmith & Fulham, I went on to develop the Equip to Achieve Programme in the MET for high potential BAME Officers and a training Programem for all Assessors.
I moved on to working with the other constabularies, the Armed forces and other public and private sector organisations, where most of the work of Just Resources International has been focused recently. Just Resources International is now an ILM accredited Centre and we are just about to launch our on-line Academy.
I remember the BPA starting in 1994 as a fledgling organization battered by the waves of public opinion and internal politics. However there were those faithful people willing to pioneer the idea and build the vision. Back then joining the organisation back then was not seen as a good thing to do and in fact it was almost seen as treachery to the mainstream. Many black officers and police staff refused to join as they did not want to be seen to part of a potentially divisive organisation.
I was pleasantly surprised at the invitation to speak at the 22nd AGM of the MetBPA, having met the Chair Janet Hills a few weeks before. I had always admired her passion and commitment.
I was looking forward to it with excitement and a little trepidation. What would it be like? Who would be there? It meant that this was the first formal event I had been to in the Met Police for years and full contact with the MetBPA, its Executive and the members, with the Deputy Mayor and the Commission attending and speaking. It was both humbling and significant.
So I want to say how proud I was as the day unfolded! All the way from meeting the Chair – Janet Hills, the new elected Executive Committee members, which includes 4 Borough Commanders, officers and police staff, to seeing a committed and engaged membership.
It was such a pleasure seeing them all there to celebrate their achievements, having pushed through the struggles and disappointments, now pressing forward to planning for a better and improved future. It was both humbling and significant!
It was an inclusive day, with representatives from other staff networks, the community and other senior police officers and staff from other forces, all engaged and committed to the best outcome.
It was with pride that I listened to the enthusiastic vision filled young entrepreneur Ivan Kiyima of Speila and his clear acknowledgement of how working with the police has changed his life – literally. His commitment to give back is widely supported by the MetBPA – hence the opportunity to speak to the audience.
The Deputy Mayor and the Commissioner were very supportive of the work of the BPA, even though the funding and structure of the staff associations is currently being debated, with looming required cuts. With or without their funding support, the MetBPA is here to stay.
There was a good question and answer session, with delegates willing to challenge and request action not just words. I add a few comments here and there.
One of the things that impressed me is that the BPA is not just about representing its members, it is also an outward focussed organisation, involved in the community, supporting young people, fundraising, and helping the community to do all it can in partnering with the police in effective crime reduction and the safety of their neighbourhoods.
I think the BPA has a great future, and although, under threat of funding cuts, like everything else, this maturing organisation has the potential to be much more than it currently is, supporting it’s members in their personal and professional development, strategically engaging with the powers that be, in order to ensure that the voices of those that cannot speak can be heard. As it continues to confront and question the inequalities in the system and partner with other external organisations, it will demonstrate that it is a strong partner which the Met Police should and must take account of, in developing better policing for London in the 21st Century.
Once again thank you for the opportunity, and for the record, to all the in the MetBPA, you have done well in the face of obstacles! Keep pressing forward and keep leaning in. The difference you make is very significant – even if it doesn’t feel like it at times.
Remember always, that sometimes in the process you cannot see the progress. But let me assure you, it will be worth it in the end.
With admiration and kind regards,
Spiela Is about building a knowledge base which can help better the world and improve access to information. We believe by creating a platform for people to collaborate on, opportunities come about this way. The end goal Is to create a new collaborative tool which services the world for the better.
Speaking on the BPA panel about community and police engagement was such an amazing, positive and uplifting experience. The team put together an excellent panel which consisted of commissioner Hogan-Howe, Deputy Mayor Sophie Linden, Super entrepreneur Shelley Cousins and Janet Hills, BPA president. We held empowering and positive talks with the crowd and networked with so many like minded people. This is the first of many great collaborations between Spiela and the BPA and look forward to the future!
The meeting was a positive eye opener to see how our community face both positive and negative situations within the establishment. The steps that are being made to build more confidence within the BME communities and the police are a fantastic step as working together is how societies are suppose to function. Within the meeting BlackPoppyRose received positive attention and feedback by many of the members and newly elected Executive Committee, who had attended. Janet Hill the Chair is a big supporter of ours too.
BlackPoppyRose wishes to work together with the MetBPA in cohesion to support and encourage us whilst informing everyone about the important roles Black & Minority ethnic groups played in History especially since the 16th century where African History becomes more combined with European History.
Cultural & Ancestral Consultant
Afro Centric Geneaologist
Founder of the BlackPoppyRose
Remembering the African/Black/Caribbean/ Pacific Islanders contributions to wars since the 16th century.
It was a great pleasure to represent the ACLT (African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust) at the MetBPA 22nd Annual General Meeting. To witness and listen to the honest and impassioned debate by so many of the attendees including the Commissioner on subject matters such as public perception, trust, mutual aims and objectives, etc. was refreshing to see. It was also great to hear the unsolicited positive endorsement of the lifesaving work of the ACLT by the Commissioner, in order to assist in creating more diversity and harmony within the MPS ranks at all staffing levels and ethnic backgrounds. After all of the talking had finished, some of the attendees then came over to my stand and registered as potential stem cell, blood and organ donors. The perfect way to end the day.
- Member of Judging Panel for Pride of Britain 2007
- Chair of The National BME Cancer Alliance
- Co-Chair of The National BAME Transplant Alliance (NBTA)
- Member of the National Cancer Equalities Initiative advisory group (NCEI)
- Member of the Blood and Marrow Transplantation Clinical Reference Group (BMT CRG)
- Winner of the Royal College of Pathologists “Oliver Memorial Award 2013”
- Winner of the National Diversity Awards 2014
- HSJ (Health Service Journal) BME Pioneer 2014
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- ACLTTurns202 June 1996 – 2 June 2016
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