Susan Dalgety: Police Scotland needs a woman in charge

Susan Deacon is head of the Scottish Police Authority. Picture: Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament
Susan Deacon is head of the Scottish Police Authority. Picture: Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament
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A Musselburgh woman has the hardest job in Scotland right now. Susan Deacon, who was head girl at Musselburgh Grammar before a successful career as a politician, academic and businesswoman, is now head of the Scottish Police Authority.

It is her job to steer our national police force through yet another rocky chapter in its very short history.

Since it was set up only five years ago, Police Scotland has seen its first two Chief Constables resign under a cloud.

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The head of armed policing is suspended pending an investigation, and there have been a series of operational gaffes that make the force look more like the Keystone Cops than our nation’s trusted crime-busters.

I am sure that Ms Deacon is awash with well-meaning advice on how to fix Police Scotland, so I hope she doesn’t mind if I make a suggestion.

It has been said that one of Police Scotland’s biggest problems is its macho culture, where brawn is respected more than brains, and command-and-control is the accepted management style.

Perhaps it’s now time for a fresh approach to policing in Scotland. Dare I say, a more female one.

READ MORE: Chief constable Phil Gormley resigns from Police Scotland

The biggest force in the UK, the Metropolitan Police, is now led, very successfully, by a woman.

Why not our national police force?

After all, Police Scotland’s policy of jobs for the boys has hardly been a roaring success.