A POTENTIAL star recruit who was rejected from a job with Cheshire Police because he was a white, heterosexual male is now set to join the force.

Matthew Furlong unsuccessfully applied to job the constabulary in 2018, having hoped to following in the footsteps of his dad – a detective inspector with Cheshire Police.

The 25-year-old lost out despite being told that it was ‘refreshing to meet someone as well prepared’ and that he ‘could not have done more’.

A tribunal earlier this year ruled that Mr Furlong had been discriminated against by the force on the grounds of sexual orientation and races.

But the former Lancaster University particle physics and cosmology student will now join Cheshire Police in September as a student officer.

And the constabulary says it has now ‘fully reviewed its police constable recruitment processes’ in line with the Equality Act 2010 following the employment tribunal’s decision.

Cheshire Police’s deputy chief constable Julie Cooke said: “We have reflected on our interpretation of the act and thoroughly reviewed our practices to ensure that we comply with it.

“We accept the findings of the tribunal and have looked very carefully at our entire recruitment practice.

“Action has been taken to change some of our processes and take account of the hearing’s result.

“It is important for us, and for candidates, that the recruitment process is fair and transparent and that all candidates are treated in a fair and consistent manner.

“However, I would like to stress that these processes were put in place with the best of intentions to attract candidates from diverse communities, and at no time were the standards of our recruits reduced.

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“We have a public-sector equality duty to take action to address underrepresentation, which continues to be a challenge in Cheshire – we will take positive action to achieve a workforce that truly represents our communities in accordance with the Equality Act.”

Employment lawyer Jennifer Ainscough represented Mr Furlong during the four-day tribunal in Liverpool.

She said: “Positive action is an incredibly important tool to aid diversity in the workforce, but this case is a reminder that it must be applied correctly to ensure that employers still recruit candidates based on merit above all else.

“Matthew was an exceptional candidate who I am sure will be an exceptional police officer and we wish him every success in his future career.”