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Norfolk police officer uses phrase ‘thickism’ when referring to people with low literacy levels

PUBLISHED: 17:54 14 March 2019 | UPDATED: 09:16 15 March 2019

Police in north Norfolk appeared to suggest people with low literacy levels were thick in a tweet sent in error last night. Photo: DENISE BRADLEY

Police in north Norfolk appeared to suggest people with low literacy levels were thick in a tweet sent in error last night. Photo: DENISE BRADLEY

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North Norfolk Police have removed a tweet posted by an officer who used the phrase “thickism” when referring to people with low literacy levels.

The tweet posted by the North Norfolk Police account. Photo: TwitterThe tweet posted by the North Norfolk Police account. Photo: Twitter

A user of the official North Norfolk Police Twitter account @NorthNorfPolice replied to a story shared by the Eastern Daily Press about a Norwich City Council report saying city dwellers are over paying bills due to low literacy levels.

The tweet, posted at 5.30pm on Wednesday, March 13, read: “Council takes too much money from ‘city dwellers’ and blames them for being illiterate. Now there’s a new excuse.

“Does ‘thickism’ fall under the equality laws???? Or is it more a case of where there’s blame there’s a claim?”

A police spokesperson said: “It is clear from the content of the tweet that it has been posted in error and is no way a view held by the constabulary.

“The post has been removed and suitable words of advice will be given to the officer involved.”

They added: “Social media is an extremely effective way of communicating with the public and can play a positive role in policing.

“We have a number of accounts, including district channels, with the primary aim of providing additional avenues for us to communicate with the public and help contribute towards our policing priorities.

“Local officers have access to accounts to keep the public informed about incidents and our day-to-day work while also keeping in touch with residents and responding to any questions or concerns they may have.”

Norfolk police has a digital and social media policy, which offers guidance on use of official police accounts as well as personal use of social media.

Officers who request access to a force social media account must take part in part training before using the account.

READ MORE: City-dwellers paying too much for bills due to low literacy levels - council report claims

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