Systemic Racism in England Affects Health to Wealth, Report Says

Racism in England is systemic and the government is “frustratingly slow” at implementing recommended solutions, according to a leading race-relations think tank.

Hate crimes rose 6% in England and Wales in the 12 months through March 2020, while Black and minority ethnic people are more than four times more likely to be targeted by stop and searches by police, the Runnymede Trust said in a report.

“Legislation, institutional practices and society’s customs continue to combine to harm” minorities, according to the report. As a result, Black and minority ethnic groups are “consistently more likely to live in poverty, to be in low-paid precarious work and to die of COVID-19.”

The government should review its equality approach to ensure it complies with the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, the think tank said. It is “particularly alarmed” by upcoming pieces of legislation around voting, immigration and policing, which it says “pose a threat to the rights” of minorities.

The publication contrasts with the findings by the government’s Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities earlier this year, which found that Britain was not “deliberately rigged” against minorities, a conclusion that drew widespread criticism.

It comes after England player Tyrone Mings this week criticized Home Secretary Priti Patel, saying she had aggravated tensions by refusing to support players taking a knee for racial equality. In June, Patel called it “gesture politics.”

The Runnymede Trust report was published on Wednesday following consultation with more than 150 organizations working to promote racial equality and human rights. It has been submitted to a United Nations Committee that is assessing the government’s record on the elimination of racism since 2016.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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