You’ve had a good run ma’am time to stop… (err… actually you didn’t and that’s the problem!)

Woman inspector ‘humiliated’ by failing riot test wins up to £30k

Humiliated: Diane Bamber brought a sex and age discrimination case against Greater Manchester PoliceDiane Bamber-or ‘speedy’ as she is known to her ‘mates’…

For 30 years it has been used to test the fitness of officers who police riots and other outbreaks of serious public disorder.

The so-called ‘shield run’ involves officers covering a distance of 500 metres in less than two minutes, 45 seconds while wearing full riot gear and carrying a shield.

But when Inspector Diane Bamber, 51, failed to meet the time limit, she claimed she had been left humiliated.

She brought a sex and age discrimination case against her force, Greater Manchester Police, and now stands to win up to £30,000 after an employment tribunal ruled in her favour.

The landmark case has opened the door for thousands of other women officers to claim payouts and has triggered a review of specialist police training across the country.

Insp Bamber, a serving officer for more than 30 years who still works for Greater Manchester Police, attended an Initial Public Order Commanders’ Course in Lancashire in November 2008.

She complained to the tribunal that prior to the course starting she had been led to believe that she would not have to take part in the shield run. But on the day of the test, Insp Bamber was informed that all officers who wanted to be considered for events where trouble was a possibility would have to pass it.

She agreed to run but she did not finish in the allotted time. Her failure meant she could not complete the rest of the training course.

When Insp Bamber applied to retake the shield run, it is alleged that one of her colleagues remarked: ‘She’s got no f****** chance.’

In fact she did pass at the second attempt several months later – after Greater Manchester Police made it easier by raising the time limit to three minutes.



This story is what I like to call a ‘target rich environment’…

1. I thought all 30+ officers were being FORCED to retire???

2. It is humiliating ma’am, I agree, but… you have humiliated yourself for failing the test and then not having the good grace to deal with it…

3. I love the way they raised the limit to help her pass… lol

This is a DISGRACE-plain and simple. The force should have told her to go forth and multiply…

Words fail!

I mean WTF????


16 responses to “You’ve had a good run ma’am time to stop… (err… actually you didn’t and that’s the problem!)

  1. Trying to boost her retirement lump sum?

  2. Level2 old timer

    Ah, the modern police service.

    “I’m sorry ma’am you have attained deferred success so we will need to realign your career plan in light of this adjustment”
    “boo hoo boo hoo it’s because i’m a woman isn’t it, you’re all mysoginists, its so unfair….toys out of pram”
    ” Err, i’m a senior officer and don’t want my career prospects halted so… we’ve reviewed your situation Inspector, and despite every one else being able to qualify, including many female officers we are going to give you more time. It doesn’t matter that your unit will be waiting for you to catch up all the time as long as you are happy”

    Not everyone is capable of every job in the police. I would not want this failure ‘leading’ my unit in a shitstorm.

    • Ahh… but that’s it isn’t it?

      There are two forces at work here:

      1. It’s my right to do what I want (no matter the consequences)…

      2. I don’t want to make a decision against a (perceived) minority-in this case a woman.

      For me, having developed short-sight in one of my eyes, I am disqualified from being a firearms officer. Now, I have carried loaded, made-ready weapons and have pointed them in anger at people. Should I now throw my teddy?

      No… I cant do it… end of.

      I am not a brilliant driver. I wouldn’t be able to pass a Grade One test to be a traffic droid (not interested in traffic-I don’t have the patience…) so, should I now throw my teddy too? Demand that the test be lower?

      I haven’t got a chance anyway…

      I’m white, straight and a man.

      Not seen as worthy causes in the Police.

  3. So all the lard arses I had the embassment to watch fail their level 5.4 (and sometimes even the level 4 warmup) bleep test at the HQ gym when I was based there, and as a result run (or waddle) off crying will be able to sue.

    Nice. The police in the UK was once known as being envied worldwide. Now it’s degenerating into a laughing stock.

  4. I thought one of you bloggers would pick up on this story….it makes us all look so stupid. Raising the time limit so everyone can pass is ridiculous.Are the rioters going to lower their standards to account for unfit police? Lucky she wasn’t black as well,that would have been tribunal jackpot. How can she look her colleagues in the eye.I guess she will be off soon with embarassment as she has done 31 years.

  5. It’s not stated – but were any other Officers failed on the ‘Shield Run’ – and then allowed another go on the ‘Bambi-Lite’ version?

  6. I don’t see what the argument is. She’s female, she’s an Inspector and, as such, the rules that apply to all you pond life are irelevant.

    You just don’t get it , do you. The fact she a useless lard arsed, office dwelling pogue is not an issue. The fact she can’t run the length of herself is also, not an issue. What REALLY matters is how are you going to survive a public order incident without her brilliant insight directing you and guiding you into matters of diversity, multiculturasim and any other ‘ism’ you care to name. YOU NEED HER!

    The fact that the cow took this to a tribunal tells you all you need to know about police management.

  7. @Ex Kent //how are you going to survive a public order incident without her brilliant insight directing you and guiding you into matters of diversity, //

    Easy – just follow her into action. Be careful NOT to get too close , but wait until she has been ‘on scene’ long enough to do the Dynamic Risk Assessment and all other H&S stuff.

  8. you will be lucky to find anyone trained to be a riot officer soon, my farce has decided to cut down the number of trained officers from approximately 3500 to 2000 due to the upcoming bonus thats supposed to be paid, i got a nice email sent to me explaining that despite voluntarily being level 2 trained for the past 7 years i was surplus to requirements as im a front line response officer and we are such a rare breed now that they cant expect us to provide any manpower should anything go tits up, funnily enough the 5’2 female warrants officer who i spoke to and works 9-5 with 3 years in the job didnt get the same email and will keep her level 2 but when a full scale riot kicks off why would you need me being only 6’5 and nudging the scales at 22 stone, ill make the brews at the rear…… bitter moi !

  9. What they could do is put the 30 grand in a box 500 metres (whatever happened to yards?) away and tell her she has 2 mins 40 secs to reach it, open the box and take the money. I bet she’d do it then!

  10. This should be appealed, even NuLabours politically correct Equality Act 2010 (Under which the claim would have been brought) allows for indirect discrimination to be objectively justified for operational reasons, of which this situation would be a text book example. Either the ET has made an error in law or there is more to this story than has been reported.

  11. TheBinarySurfer

    This is the sort of shite i saw going on constantly; the standards are essentially non-existent now (PS; 500m in 2m 45s is NOTHING. Thats a light jog, even wearing 60lbs of kit/shield. )

  12. Still ‘up to £30K comp.’ should be a good retirement party, soon!
    The modern police service, where there are no standards and incompetance is a recognised disability issue.

  13. This is the police service all over. If you cant do the job, we will change the job to fit in around you! Can you imagine the police service running something like agriculture. Hello Mr Singh I understand you want to be a dairy farmer, but for religious reasons do not want anything to do with cows. No problem. We can accommodate that. Meet Clarabel the cyber-cow. FFS

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