Inquiring Together: Collaborative Research with BAME Communities and Serving Officers

Closed 27 Jul 2022

Opened 4 Apr 2022


This national project will support police officers to engage with people who are seldom heard: refugees, migrants and people from black and minority ethnic (BAME) communities in Dundee, Glasgow and Aberdeenshire. This will allow a set of policing guidelines to be developed by police officers, people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds and migrants working together to increase communication and engagement.

It has been widely recognised peoples from seldom heard communities have suffered negative experiences with the police in their native countries, and here in Scotland, which affects trust and confidence in Police Scotland. Many people who are refugees, migrants and people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds live in areas high in the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD). Language and communication barriers, a feeling of uncertainty regarding their immigration status and a fear of racism often deters members of seldom heard communities contacting police and/or engaging with police officers when needed.

Utilising bilingual facilitators and a qualitative approach to research, practitioners from the University of Dundee aim to work collaboratively with sample participants from the aforementioned communities and police officers. This will be followed by a series of structured workshops where discussion will take place surrounding past life experiences, experience of crime in their native countries, barriers preventing communication with police followed by discussion aimed at developing guidelines for good police practice where data will be generated and recorded.

The police officers involved will undertake training on the means and principles of communicating with the sample populations. Each officer will participate within small focus groups with participants to hear their shared experiences and assist the development of long-lasting guidelines which will make a difference for policing in Scotland.


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