200 men miss out in state’s discriminatory police policy
Police discriminated against men in a female-focused hiring spree that saw 200 men who should have been hired miss out on a job.
The bombshell finding is contained in a Crime and Corruption Commission report tabled in parliament today into a female recruitment strategy employed by the Queensland Police Service between December 2015 to October 2018.
"The discriminatory practices saw different standards applied to female and male applicants, with females selected in preference to male applicants who had performed to a higher standard across entry assessments," the corruption watchdog found.
"The investigation shows around 2000 male applicants were subject to discriminatory assessment practices which prevented them from progressing through the recruitment process over approximately an 18-month period from July 2016 to the end of 2017.
"If the various discriminatory practices had not been implemented, the CCC estimates approximately 200 more meritorious male applicants would have been successful in their attempt to join the QPS."
The CCC found that while there was "insufficient evidence" to support criminal action, there was evidence that warranted disciplinary action.
"The CCC plans to take action in the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) ... against one or more of the (persons of interest) seeking a finding of corrupt conduct," the report said.
The CCC alleges staff in the recruiting section were so intent on achieving the gender equity targets that they lowered standards and allowed female recruits to progress even though they had failed certain entry requirements.
"By late 2017, in order to achieve the target of 50 per cent female recruitment, some female applicants were approved for progression by methods including: lowering the required standard for female applicants on cognitive assessment (including for female applicants who had already previously been told they did not meet the required standard), allowing female applicants who had failed aspects of the physical assessment to progress and allowing female applicants who had previously been assessed as not suitable on psychological grounds to progress."
The Courier-Mail broke the news in January that an investigation was under way after allegations were made of "irregularities" within the recruitment process.
At the time, a QPS spokesman confirmed a review had taken place and an investigation had begun.
"As a result, allegations of irregularities associated with some past police recruiting processes were identified," the spokesman said.
"These allegations are now subject to investigation by the Crime and Corruption Commission and QPS Ethical Standards Command
"In the meantime, the QPS has put mechanisms in place to ensure confidence in more recent and ongoing recruiting processes."
Originally published as 200 men miss out in state's discriminatory police policy