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Stephen Lawrence Day: How Can We Reflect and Take Action for Change?"

Stephen Lawrence Day is a national day of remembrance in the United Kingdom, held on April 22 each year. The day honours the life and legacy of Stephen Lawrence, a black British teenager who was murdered in a racially motivated attack in 1993.

In Scotland, the day has significant implications for policing. Police Scotland has acknowledged that it is Institutionally Racist, and there is still work to be done to address issues of racism and discrimination within the police force. This includes increasing the diversity of police officers and staff, improving training on unconscious biases, and ensuring that complaints of discrimination are taken seriously and dealt with promptly.

The antiracism movement is about acknowledging the systemic injustices that have plagued our societies for far too long. It is about recognising every human's inherent dignity and worth, regardless of race or ethnicity. It is about standing up for what is right, even in the face of opposition and adversity. 

The movement is a call to action, a demand for change, and a commitment to creating a more equitable and just world. It is about working together to dismantle the centuries-old structures of oppression and build a future where everyone is truly free and equal.

It is not enough to say that we are not racist - we must actively work to be antiracist, to challenge racism wherever we see it, and to create a world where diversity is celebrated and embraced.

The antiracism movement is about hope, the belief that we can make a better world for ourselves and a better working environment for future generations of Police Officers.

Our inception was on the heels of the McPherson Report on the inquiry into the death of black teenager Stephen Lawrence; with its criticism of a culture of "institutionalised racism", police forces throughout the UK had a long, hard look at their attitude towards the minority ethnic population.

In organisations with transient leadership and post-rotation, each generation must take responsibility to ensure that the next generation remembers the lessons learned and continues to build and improve on the work done before them. It is a responsibility that should not be taken lightly, as it requires a commitment to passing down knowledge, skills, and values that promote growth and progress. Every generation has the opportunity to impact the world positively, and it is up to us to take that opportunity and make the most of it.

By actively working to create a culture of continuous improvement, we can ensure that our organisation thrives and that the next generation is equipped to take on new challenges and build upon past successes. 

Stephen Lawrence Day reminds us of the ongoing struggle for racial justice and equality in the UK and beyond. By using the day as an opportunity for reflection and action, policing in Scotland can play a vital role in promoting these values and building a more just and equitable society.

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