The Supreme Court has annulled the requirement of having a minimum height of 1.60 meters required of women to access the National Police, considering that it is an "indirect discrimination" with respect to men, since the requirement that they reach 1.65 meters is less demanding. According to the High Court, the percentage of women who do not reach the required height amounts to 25%, much higher than the 3% of men.
Army and security forces reduce the required height so as not to discriminate against women: "Height has not limited me"
Last February, the Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, announced that in the call for tests scheduled for 2023, the requirement of a minimum height will be abolishedexcept to enter the police intervention units, the UIP and the UPR, and the Special Operations Group, the GEO.
According to the Supreme Court, the indirect discrimination that would occur by setting the same height for women and men, as the Court of Justice of the European Union warned in October 2017, is not saved by the mere fact of setting different heights if they do not have taking into account the differences in average height by sex of the Spanish population.
The judges thus estimate the appeal presented by a woman who measures 1.56 meters and was excluded in 2017 from the selective process of entering the Basic Scale of the National Police. The woman first appealed to the Council of Ministers and, given her silence, she went to the Supreme Court, where she also demanded that the minimum height requirement be annulled. As she explained, the average height standards were 1.74 meters for men and 1.63 for women and only a minimum height of 1.54 meters for women would restore the necessary equality.
The Supreme Court highlights that the regulations governing the tests in question do not include "objective and legitimate" reasons that support a difference in treatment of men and women.
The State attorney argued that police officers must have characteristics that allow them to be versatile in different positions, but the Supreme Court insists that the administration says nothing about the different minimum heights, that versatility and "its influence in maintaining the citizen security".
In addition, the room highlights that in the selection process there are physical and medical tests that alone guarantee the suitability for the development of police functions, recalls that in that body there are many areas that do not require a special physical condition, "and much less have a more or less tall stature”, and points out that the Civil Guard, for example, requires 1.60 meters for men and 1.55 for women.
The Supreme, in addition to annulling the height requirement, declares the exclusion of the appellant woman null and void and recognizes her right to carry out the selective entrance tests in the Police. If you pass them, it also recognizes the economic and administrative rights corresponding to the applicants who passed the exams in their year, including seniority and ranking.