Police force holds jobs event to recruit gays

Originally published in Evening Times, 21/8/2009

SCOTLAND'S largest police force is launching a recruitment drive aimed at the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.
Staff from the diversity recruiting team and organisations including the Gay Police Association will be giving advice and information to potential applicants during a one-day event in Glasgow tomorrow.

The force will also be presented with a diversity award next week for its efforts to boost recruitment in minority groups.

PC Susan Phee, from Strathclyde Police diversity department, said: "We encourage people from all walks of life and diverse backgrounds to join the force.

"The idea behind this recruitment and information day is to inform anyone from the LGBT communities about what opportunities are available within the police, to encourage them to find out what roles are most suited to them and to potentially join us.

"Officers and staff from the other organisations will be available for one-to-one chats and will answer questions and allay any fears or reservations people might have about joining the police."

The event, which will be held at The Gallery of Modern Art, Royal Exchange Square, from noon to 4pm tomorrow was welcomed by equality campaigners.

Johann Lamont, Labour's equalities spokeswoman, said: "I welcome the fact Strathclyde Police is engaging with different communities in the city to maximise recruitment.

"Being a police officer is a hugely important job and forces should reflect the diverse communities in Scotland."

Her praise was echoed by Councillor Ruth Black, city council spokeswoman for equalities, who said: "Strathclyde Police has to be highly commended for undertaking this campaign.

"It can only help get us away from the canteen culture that often supports homophobia in the workplace."

David Lyle, Scottish co-ordinator for the Gay Police Association, said: "The GPA welcomes any initiatives taken by forces to recruit from the widest possible audience.

"The quality of the applicants and what they can offer the service is what matters, not their sexual orientation or sexual identity."