Green London Assembly Member Jenny Jones has called for the Metropolitan Police's infamous Territorial Support Group (TSG) to be disbanded in a bid to improve confidence in policing among young people.
Ms Jones argued in a new report that money saved by scrapping the TSG, which specialises in policing protests, could be used to pay for more neigbourhood police officers and given public order training.
The report showed how young people's perception of crime and policing in London differs from the adult consensus in many important respects.
Ms Jones said: "I see local police patrolling and feel safer, they feel more vulnerable. I see a police van and I'm curious, they see the TSG as a van load of bullies."
She said that it was essential that the police are aware of these preceived differences between youngsters and adults.
Her comments follow an Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) review of the TSG, which it found "has, at least historically, generated higher numbers of recorded complaints of excessive force and oppressive behaviour than their Territorial Policing (borough-based) colleagues."
The review was carried out in response to public concerns about the level of complaints made against TSG officers.
But the IPCC added that "over the past three years, the Met has put in place a programme of interventions to learn from these complaints, and over this period the number of complaints has reduced substantially."