In Mexico Sexist police practice sees female cops judged on looks

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play A chief under fire in Mexico previously held a similar job in the state of Aguascalientes, where he formed a unit of female officers, who wore high-heeled boots. (State of Aguascalientes)
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Mexico's police force has caused outrage after female police officers in the Mexican city of Querétaro have filed complaints that male commanders subjected them to “attractiveness” inspections as part of the selection process for a new female unit.

Two officers have complained to the state’s human rights commission, said Maricruz Ocampo, of Coincidir Mujeres, an NGO which is supporting the women, the UK Guardian reports.

The allegations emerged as police in the city went on strike this week, demanding the resignation of chief Rolando Eugenio Hidalgo Eddy.

Ocampo said that young female officers were singled out for an inspection at which their male superiors commented on their appearance and weight – telling one woman who had been pregnant but had lost her child that she was “paunchy”.

“The women said, ‘I trained to be a police officer, not a showgirl,’” Ocampo said.

Mexico is currently confronting a spate of sexual violence, which has drawn outrage on social media and society at large, but has also been met with a backlash of misogynistic comments and threats.

The chief who police are demanding the resignation of, Hidalgo Eddy, had previously held a similar job in the state of Aguascalientes, where he formed a unit of attractive female officers, who went about their duties wearing high-heeled boots, tight clothes and lots of lipstick.

But, as the Guardian reports, his methods have been copied across the country - Acapulco recently started a tourist police force of attractive, young, female officers.

Ocampo said a surge of sexual harassment allegations has also occurred within the police.

A spokesman for Querétaro police in a statement denied that there were plans to form a special female unit. He did not comment on the harassment allegations, saying the department would wait for the human rights commission investigation.

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