One of the many reforms to have emerged from the Stephen Lawrence inquiry is that requiring the police to make a record of all stops (Recommendation 61). What might have been accepted as a fairly routine extension of the existing regulatory framework was widely resented by officers who considered it part of an 'attack' on the police service spearheaded by allegations of institutional racism. This 'attack', it is argued here, has been experienced as a form of collective trauma, giving rise to a series of defence mechanisms and allied forms of resistance that have distanced the new recording requirement from its intended purpose. Such defences, it is concluded, should be anticipated and addressed as part of the process of reform
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