Commander chief superintendent Victor Olisa has been appointed strategic lead for diversity and inclusion within the Metropolitan Police.
Olisa, who will replace the Met’s senior expert on diversity and inclusion, Denise Milani, will leave his current post after three years and move into his new role where he will aim to make the police force more “diverse and inclusive”.
“We’ve come a long way but there’s still more we can do to become a police service that’s more diverse and inclusive,” he said in a statement.
Olisa, a biochemistry graduate, grew up in the multicultural inner city area of Cheetham Hill, in Manchester, joined the police force in 1982 as part of a drive to attract a new type of officer who could help change the institution’s culture.
The date is important; Olisa started his career with Surrey Police in the months following the publication of the landmark Scarman Report, which identified discrimination within the force.
It was a direct result of the 1981 Brixton riots, which were, in effect, a protest over the aggressive and disproportionate use of stop and search powers against black youth.
A decade later, the married father-of-two was at the Home Office working on reforming the way stop and search was carried out to improving its effectiveness.
“It has been a tremendous three years for me in Haringey,” Olisa said of his post in the north London borough, “a time that I have enjoyed immensely and during which I have had the good fortune to work with many extraordinary members of the community and partner agencies, and many brilliant officers and staff. We have achieved significant reductions in crime, seen confidence in the police increase and developed strong working relationship with many different communities and partner agencies. I shall miss working here greatly.”