THE chief constable of Police Scotland has acknowledged the force is racist, sexist, misogynistic, and discriminatory.

At a meeting of the Scottish Police Authority on Thursday morning, Sir Iain Livingstone said: “It is right for me to clearly state that institutional racism, sexism, misogyny and discrimination is a reality for Police Scotland.

"Publicly acknowledging these issues exist institutionally is essential to our absolute commitment to championing equality and becoming an anti-racist service.

"Prejudice and bad behaviour within policing, as highlighted by court and conduct cases, various independent reviews and by listening to our own officers and staff over recent years, is rightly of great concern and is utterly condemned."

READ MORE: Review finds 'racism, sexism, and homophobia' in Police Scotland

Condemning police prejudice, Livingstone noted that this acknowledgement is the first step to ensuring the force becomes “anti-racist” and earns the community’s trust.

He further said that acknowledging institutional racism within policing should act as a “catalyst” for change.

Livingstone said: “Recognition that institutional racism exists within Police Scotland is a key step, a fundamental step forward towards being an inclusive service which champions equality for all the people of Scotland.

“It is the right thing to do and will make policing in Scotland even more effective in keeping people safe.”

His comments follow a recent report from an independent review group, which uncovered “ongoing discrimination against minoritised communities”, including racism, sexism, and homophobia in Police Scotland The Scottish Police Authority report states that it has also heard “a degree of scepticism and even outright fear” from staff concerned about raising issues informally or formally.

It says that some people have been “punished” for speaking out, for instance by being sidelined or moved to a less convenient location.

Referring specifically to the cases of Rhona Malone and Sheku Bayoh, the report stated “a general acknowledgement that Police Scotland was far from immune from the issues raised”.

Former officer Malone was awarded nearly £1 million by Police Scotland last year following a sex discrimination case in what she described as “absolute boys club culture”.

Bayoh, who was restrained by six police officers, died in police custody in Kirkcaldy eight years ago. The inquiry into the circumstances of his death is ongoing at Capital House in Edinburgh to determine whether race was a factor.

The chief constable has been in the role since 2016 and announced he will step down in August later this year.