Sunday 26 March 2023


Casey Review finds systemic shortcomings in internal culture and professional standards in the MPS

Baroness Casey has published her independent review into the internal culture and professional standards of the Metropolitan Service (MPS).  The LGBT+ Advisory Group to the MPS welcomes the findings of this stark and challenging report. The review has provided a forensic analysis giving a perspective that crosses many strands.

Our Advisory Group was established in 2020 following the London nail bomb attacks in Brixton, Brick Lane and Soho. We have been working with the MPS on LGBT+ issues. The MPS has made much progress in many areas and there is clear commitment at the senior levels to equality, diversity and inclusion. However, almost 23 years, the Casey Review confirms that much more needs to be done. 

It is clear from our own work that there are still deep-seated cultural shortcomings in the MPS. Too many frustrating interactions have shown us that there is much inertia against change in this large organisation. We hope that this review will provide renewed focus and impetus to the transformational change needed in the MPS.

The reports finds that frontline policing has been eroded over the years and that trust and confidence in the police has been falling, especially within the LGBT+ community. The failure to link the serial murders of Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth and Jack Taylor in 2014-15 was a turning point, showing that the urgent need to raise the cultural competence of the frontline police. 

The review team’s survey also found MPS’s own LGBT+ officers and staff have regular experience of homophobia, and that there are many cultural barriers to challenge such behaviour. 

The LGBT+ Advisory Group is committed to working with with the MPS to implement the recommendations of the Casey Review. We will be actively challenging the MPS to make sure that the LGBT+ issues remain an integral part of the cultural transformation needed in the MPS. 

We are currently involved in developing a new model of LGBT+ community liaison officers to improve how the local police engage with and listen to the community, a key shortcoming identified by the review.

Beyond the Casey review, we will also make sure that bi, trans and non-binary voices are heard. We are also keenly aware that cultural issues cannot be confined to compartments and many intersectional challenges need to be addressed. We will continue to work on hate crime, sexual violence and many other policing issues faced by the LGBT+ community.

We will be facilitating a community engagement event in the near future for the MPS to listen to our community’s response to the Casey Review and also the MPS Turnaround Plan.

Thursday 23 March 2023


Man convicted of murder in Tower Hamlets Park Cemetery

The trial for the murder of Ranjith ‘Roy’ Kankanamalage has concluded at the Old Bailey. A man, Erik Feld, was convicted of his murder at the Old Bailey earlier today. Sentencing will be at a later date.

Ranjith was violently attacked by Feld in the Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park in August 2021. This had caused major concerns among the local residents and the LGBT+ community. Feld was charged after his DNA was found under the murdered man’s fingernails. We have since learnt that Feld had an obsession with hammer attacks and videos of such violent assaults. During the trial, he had an outburst of homophobic slurs directed at the public gallery. This reinforces the perception among the LGBT+ people that this was a homophobic attack.

Ranjith came to London to make a new life some time ago from Sri Lanka – a country where a legal sanctions and harsh prejudice against LGBTQ+ people still exists. Our condolences extend to his grown up children, his former husband and his wider family and friends. The violence he was subjected to was unconscionable, and we welcome the verdict.

We worked closely with the local police and the homicide team to ensure that they incorporated learning arising from how the Met initially mishandled murders perpetrated by Stephen Port. At a time when trust and confidence is at an all time low, we will continue to provide robust independent advice to improve the police service delivered to LGBTQ+ Londoners in all our diversity.