Gloucestershire Constabulary has a Black, Asian, Minority & Ethnic (BAME) Community Legitimacy Panel who support the community. The panel is made up of a variety of people of all ages (16+) from a BAME background who come together to provide independent advice to the police. The group complements the six existing Independent Advisory Groups, which already offer advice on a range of issues but are not representative of specific communities.

How can I help?

We are looking for volunteers from BAME communities to help us make sure we provide a quality service to the communities of Gloucestershire. We need the advice of people who are willing to help us understand the issues affecting BAME communities, while questioning and challenging current practices in a constructive way.

These include:

  • Recruiting more people to come and work for the police from BAME communities so that our service is more representative and better reflects our diverse population
  • Advice on retention and progression of BAME officers and staff through the ranks once they join the organisation
  • Hate crime – what we do well and what we can do better, in particular how to get people to come forward to report hate incidents and hate crimes so that we can investigate properly
  • Stop and search – we want to keep people safe but make sure we stop people proportionately and fairly

We want to, in particular, hear the voices of younger people from black, minority ethnic communities who often do not come forward, as well as individuals who may be part of their local mosque or church. Or simply someone who is interested in community relations and has something to contribute to local policing from a BAME perspective.

Who can join?

If you identify yourself as Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic and have a keen interest in policing and its effects upon your community, we want to hear from you.

We want you to point out any criticisms you may have, but we also want you to be able to offer suggestions about how we could do things better.

We have a strong focus on diversity and the ‘protected characteristics’ as covered by the Equality Act 2010:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender Reassignment
  • Marriage and Civil Partnership
  • Pregnancy and Maternity
  • Race
  • Religion and Belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual Orientation

Why do we need independent advice?

We want to make sure that we deliver the highest quality police services to our diverse communities across Gloucestershire. We need the advice of people who are independent of the police to make sure our services match community needs as closely as possible.

Do I need to represent a group or community?

Yes. We are asking for people who reflect BAME communities to ensure we hear the voices from all our communities. Although you are naturally likely to reflect the opinions of other people you know, as well as your own, ultimately the only person you will represent is yourself. As member of a BAME community, you will have a better understanding of the issues affecting its members.

Do I need any qualifications?

No. You do not need any formal qualifications. We want you for your opinions, advice and personal experience. To carry out the role, it is important that you can:

  • Express and explain your views to others
  • Listen and consider other people’s views
  • Question and challenge the views of others in a constructive way
  • Work as part of a diverse team
  • Offer advice on the development of police plans and policy

What will you do with the advice I give?

The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) is committed to ensuring that the police consider advice from members of its independent advisory groups. However, the police are legally responsible for the actions they take. We value members’ contributions, but there might be occasions where no action is taken on the advice given or the police will act differently from the way you advise. Whatever action is taken, the police will act with your views in mind. Where possible, we will make sure we tell you what action we take upon your advice and the reasons why.

How often will the BAME Advisory Group meet?

The group will meet at least four times per year. There may be times when members will be asked for advice on specific issues such as how the impact of a particular investigation may effect a specific community.

In these cases, we may ask for your advice at short notice, but this will only happen in exceptional circumstances

Will I get paid?

No. This is voluntary work. By using volunteers we are assured of independent advice. If it were a paid job, people may question the independence of advisors.

However, we do value your advice, and the fact that you are giving up your time to support this important initiative, so reasonable expenses will be paid.

Can I also join other panels that review Stop and Search and Use of Force incidents?

Yes, you can use this form to apply to join these panels in addition to the BAME Community Legitimacy Panel.

The stop search Panel meets monthly to review a selection of stop search incidents across the county. It advises whether police action in each incident was appropriate and gives feedback that is used by the organisation to help improve processes and training.

More information on stop search can be found here. 

The use of force panel meets quarterly to review a selection of incidents in which force has been used across the county. It advises whether police action in each incident was appropriate and gives feedback that is used by the organisation to help improve processes and training.

More information on use of force can be found here.

How to apply

You can apply to join our community panels by using the link below.

Apply to join our community panels