On International Women's Day, Friday 8th March, Our Lady’s High School, Hackney welcomed members of the Metropolitan Police Service in the centenary year of women first joining the Met as police officers.
The school welcomed female officers in various capacities. Along with Detective Chief Superintendent Sue Williams (BCU Commander for Tower Hamlets and Hackney), they included Emergency Response Officers (ERPT), Armed Response Officers (ARV), Territorial Support Group (TSG), Scenes of Crime Officers (SOCO), Local Policing Team (LPT), and Dog Handlers.
Each officer shared with the girls her journey towards a career in the Met. One police officer from the dog handling unit explained that, at 4'11", she was gutted to be told she could never be a police officer when she was at school, but she never gave up on her dreams and was delighted when the police service stopped rejecting applicants on the basis of height. The police women urged all the girls, regardless of their backgrounds, to consider a fulfilling role in the police service, and to help make a difference.
A Year 7 student said, 'It was really fun meeting the police women on International Women's Day. I had never seen so many police before. I would definitely consider working in the dog handling unit when I am older, because it looks like a really good job."
Chief Superintendent Williams said, ‘I think it is important for us as female leaders to share our story with the next generation. To provide them with an insight into our role as police officers, and to inform our young girls that all dreams are achievable with a little hard work and strong determination.’
Our Lady's also wore black and white clothes on International Women's day to represent this year's theme of balance: a better balance a better world. The school raised over £100 which will go to Wings of Hope Charity, to help educate girls in the developing world.