(Reuters) – Philadelphia’s police commissioner resigned on Tuesday over what the town mayor mentioned was his division’s failure to deal with accusations of sexual harassment and racial discrimination within the ranks.
Commissioner Richard Ross, who joined the Philadelphia police power in 1989, tendered his resignation after serving for 2 years within the division’s prime job, Mayor Jim Kenney mentioned in a written assertion.
Final summer time Philadelphia handed down new sexual harassment guidelines and applied a sequence of inner reforms all through the town authorities geared toward stopping office discrimination and harassment.
In July, two feminine members of the Philadelphia Police Division sued the town, alleging they’d been groped and verbally harassed by male colleagues on the power and that supervisors, together with Ross, failed to reply adequately.
Ross was not personally accused of any wrongdoing.
“Whereas rolling out a brand new coverage understandably takes time, I don’t consider the police division has taken the required actions to deal with the underlying cultural points that too usually negatively impression ladies—particularly ladies of colour,” Kenney mentioned.
Ross didn’t challenge a separate assertion.
The mayor mentioned a deputy commissioner, Christine Coulter, had been named to serve within the prime job on an interim foundation throughout a seek for a everlasting substitute.
“I can be enlisting the assistance of an unbiased agency to research the latest allegations and to make suggestions to beat among the discrimination and harassment inside the division,” Kenney mentioned.
Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Modifying by Sonya Hepinstall