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EDITORIAL

Dear Readers,

Yesterday was Stephen Lawrence Day in the UK. As the Canary observes, it’s 28 years since the murder of Stephen Lawrence, and we’re still fighting for racial justice in all areas of life. I guess we would not even know about this case without Baroness Doreen Lawrence’s campaign for justice for her son as well as for other victims of racist crime.

Another mother’s work to which we should all pay attention to is Ella’s mother, Mrs Rosamund Adoo- Kissi-Debrah, who has called on the government to act on the coroner’s recommendation for a change in the law after air pollution led to the death of her nine-year-old girl.

As you will see, I have also added a “Religion & Culture” news section below, which I hope you will find useful, especially this week as it includes new reports and resources.

Hope you will also find the time to have a look at the workplace equality toolkits that you can find in the “Employment & Work” section.

Keep Well & Stay Safe,

Thushari Perera

BLACK EUROPE RESOURCES

A digital resource on Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Issues

Previous issues: Black & Asian News

Other Newsletters: Black & Asian Heritage Mix’

Please scroll down and just click on the title to access the full version of the news stories you wish to read, thank you.

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CULTURE, MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT

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New Podcast Explores South Asian Contributions To UK Music Industry: Listen, DJ Mag, 15 April 2021

“The podcast, RepresentAsian Podcast, is a new project from Bristolian Pakistani siblings Yusuf, a DJ, promoter, radio host and booking agent, and Safiya, a freelance writer who was worked with the likes of Bristol24/7 and Gal-Dem. After recently learning to to DJ, Safiya launched the podcast to explore the reason for the lack of representation of South Asian artists in the UK scene.”

 

EMPLOYMENT & WORK

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Coalition calls on Government to tackle unemployment disparities for young black men in London, Trust for London, 8 April 2021

“The four asks for the Government are: (1) To publish quarterly unemployment statistics by age, gender and ethnicity. (2) To require local action plans to tackle ethnic employment gaps in areas of high unemployment. (3) To require all employers with 250+ employees to monitor and publish information about job applications and appointments by age, gender and ethnicity (including in relation to apprentices). (4) To adopt the Inclusive Employer Toolkit and encourage all employers to use it and report on progress.”

 

Big Issue Invest launches Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion Measurement Tool, The Big Issue, 22 April 2021

Big Issue Invest has designed a Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion Measurement Tool to support organisations to measure their diversity characteristics internally and within the different groups that use their services.”

 

UK unemployment rate falls to 4.9% despite Covid restrictions, The Guardian, 21 April 2021

“However, the picture of strength emerging in the jobs market comes with as many as 4.7m jobs furloughed at the end of February according to separate figures from HMRC… the official figures show about 1.7 million people were unemployed in the three months to February.

Despite the decline in the headline jobless rate, employment – which measures the number of people in work – fell slightly, by 73,000 in the three months to the end of February, in a sign that the jobs market is stabilising but not yet managing to create significantly higher numbers of opportunities…”

 

Amnesty International has culture of white privilege, report finds, The Guardian, 20 April 2021

“Exclusive: Workers allege systemic bias and racist language by senior staff including N-word and P-word”

 

Mentors aiming to train more social workers from Black and diverse communities, Asian Image, 17 April 2021

“This year sees the launch of a new degree programme at Liverpool Hope University, being run in conjunction with Liverpool City Council and spearheaded by the Lord Mayor Anna Rothery.  The institutions say that too few people from the city’s Global Majority groups take-up roles in social work – which has a significant knock-on effect for those needing care.“

 

EDUCATION

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UK universities urge government to be ‘proportionate’ in free speech legislation, The Guardian, 22 April 2021

“In an intensification of ministers’ culture war agenda, the Queen’s speech to parliament on 11 May will contain measures on the campus free speech, potentially including the creation of a “free speech champion” for England, extending legal requirements on free speech to student unions, and allowing speakers who are “no platformed” to sue for compensation.”

 

Stephen Lawrence Day: Time for racial equality in further education, Hackney Gazette, 22 April 2021

“…Trailing even further down memory lane, I also remember a large number of my male friends of Black Caribbean heritage not being supported in further education, and eventually feeling pushed to drop out…If you would like to engage with the work of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Race Equality in Education, please follow the group…”

 

HEALTH, WELL-BEING & SCIENCE

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Pandemic has led to surge in stress levels for doctors’, Eastern Eye, 21 April 2021

“Dr Adrian James, president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, earlier this month called for NHS staff and patients to be monitored for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in the aftermath of the pandemic. He warned that be­tween a third and a half of people who had been ventilated in hos­pital as a result of Covid experi­enced symptoms of PTSD along with 20 per cent of staff working in intensive care.”

 

Pregnant women need better Covid safety at work, say campaigners, The Guardian, 21 April 2021

“Husband of UK nurse Mary Agyapong, who died in 2020, says government still not doing enough”

 

London barbershops trained to test blood pressure in first ever UK project, The Voice, 20 April 2021

“The London barbershop project will target black and Asian men who are more likely to have high blood pressure and less likely to be diagnosed than the general population…“Sadly, millions of adults in the UK have high blood pressure and half are undiagnosed which can lead to strokes or heart attacks.”

 

Online NHS campaign to help men over 40 reduce risk of diabetes, The Evening Standard, 20 April 2021

“The campaign, which will use Facebook to reach millions of men, suggests lifestyle changes to help avoid the condition.”

 

Racial discrimination and bullying at parenting charity leaving staff ‘suicidal,’ union warns ahead of parliamentary debate, Morning Star, 18 April 2021

“The Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB) said that self-employed practitioners at the National Childbirth Trust (NCT) were being “bullied and intimidated” by bosses using client feedback as part of “equality assurance” procedures.”

 

FOOD

Trussell Trust Emergency Food Parcel UK 2020-2021

End of Year Stats, Trussell Trust, 22 April 2021

“Between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021, food banks in the Trussell Trust’s UK wide network distributed 2.5 million emergency food parcels to people in crisis, a 33% increase on the previous year. 980,000 of these went to children.”

 

Marcus Rashford and Tom Kerridge launch Health Start vouchers cooking scheme, The Big Issue, 22 April 2021

“Full Time: Get Cooking With Marcus & Tom will give out 52 simple recipes at supermarkets and on social media to help families use the boosted £4.25 per child vouchers”

 

ENVIRONMENT

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‘Ella’s Law’ urgently needed to save children’s lives from toxic air pollution, says mother, The Independent, 21 April 2021

“A coroner’s report has urged the government to set stricter air pollution limits to prevent similar deaths in the future, after Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah died following a severe asthma attack in 2013.”

 

POLICING & JUSTICE SYSTEM

Stephen Lawrence Day

28 years since the murder of Stephen Lawrence, and we’re still fighting for racial justice, The Canary, 22 April 2021

“On 22 April, we commemorate the 28th anniversary of the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence. His untimely death led to the 1999 MacPherson report – a watershed moment for race relations in Britain. But 28 years on, we are still fighting against racist oppression in all areas of life.”

 

Joe Biden is facing up to racism following the George Floyd murder verdict – Boris Johnson should do the same, inews, 21 April 2021

“We made wide-reaching recommendations in the 1997 Macpherson report, but the misuse and abuse of police powers continues”

 

GOVERNMENT & COMMUNITIES

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Thousands of vulnerable people missed out on support at start of pandemic, The Guardian, 21 April 2021

“As many as 800,000 clinically extremely vulnerable people may have missed out on government support at the start of the Covid pandemic, with some elderly and blind people struggling to access food, parliament’s spending watchdog has found.”

 

UK hit harder by pandemic poverty than in France and Germany, The Big Issue, 21 April 2021

A weak social security safety net plus a decade of austerity left Brits more vulnerable to pandemic poverty, according to a new report

 

RELIGION & CULTURE

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Board of Deputies – Board of Deputies publishes landmark report on racial inclusivity in the Jewish community (bod.org.uk), 22 April 2021

“…we launched this Commission to learn more about the experiences of Black Jews, Jews of Colour and Sephardi, Mizrahi and Yemenite Jews, to examine the issues and make recommendations for how our community can do better…”

Read the Report here

 

Church of England must shortlist minority ethnic candidates for bishop roles – report, The Guardian, 22 April 2021

“Taskforce says racism is a sin and church governing bodies should have minority ethnic representation”

Read the Report here

 

Justin Welby tells Church of England to stop using NDAs amid racism claims. BBC News, 20 April 2021

The Archbishop of Canterbury has said the Church of England should not use non-disclosure agreements, after BBC Panorama revealed they were being used to silence staff complaining of racism.

 

Church of England clergy ‘paid off to keep quiet about racism’, The Guardian, 19 April 2021

“Ex-race adviser tells BBC some clergy and staff who complained had to sign non-disclosure agreements”

 

Is the Church Racist?, BBC iPlayer, Panorama

“Clive Myrie investigates allegations of racism in the Church of England, hearing stories of racist abuse and claims of a culture that creates a hostile environment for Christians of colour”

 

Islamophobia – Series of Reports & Resources, Tell Mama, April 2021

Resources include: Personal Safety Tips for Ramadan – April 2021

 

Ramadan – why Muslims fast and simple ways to support them at work, HR Magazine, 14 April 2021

“The month of Ramadan has begun and presents an ideal opportunity to engage with your Muslim employees and colleagues. Ramadan can appear strange if you are not familiar with this particular pillar of Islam. Understanding Ramadan and why Muslims fast can assist with that engagement and how to support them.”

 

Ramadan and Diabetes, Diabetes UK, April 2021

“Ramadan in 2021 will run from April 12 to May 11, ending with Eid al-Fitr, a religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide. This page has information for people living with diabetes who are thinking about fasting.”

 

ROYALS & THE MONARCHY

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Sunday Times editor apologises for report saying ‘secretly we rather enjoyed’ Prince Philip ‘slitty eyes’ gaffes, Press Gazette, 21 April 2021

“Sunday Times editor Emma Tucker has apologised after a front page story about Prince Philip’s funeral claimed the public “secretly enjoyed” gaffes which sometimes had a racial element.”

 

SPORTS

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If football can unify against the European Super League, why not racism?, The Big Issue, 22 April 2021

When the football industry cares about something it has unprecedented power, says Leon Mann. We must make sure the force shown over the European Super League doesn’t go to waste

 

WIDER EUROPE

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Nearly 17 child migrants a day vanished in Europe since 2018, The Guardian, 21 April 2021

“Investigation finds one in six were solo and under 15, as experts say cross-border cooperation ‘nonexistent’”

 

Amid Rising Hate Crimes Against Jews, EU Announces $2 Billion ‘Comprehensive Strategy’ to Counter Antisemitism and Intolerance, The Algemeiner, 21 April 2021

“A total of 1.3 million Jews currently live in the geographical area of Europe, which for survey purposes includes Jews in the 27 EU member states as well as in the United Kingdom, Turkey and Russia.”

 

Implementing ECHR judgments: New factsheet on freedom of expression cases, Council of Europe, 21 April 2021

The Council of Europe’s Department for the Execution of Judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has published a new thematic factsheet focusing on cases related to freedom of expression.

 

Why EU needs to be wary that AI will increase racial profiling, Euobserver, 19 April 2021

“Whether it be ‘predictive’ algorithmic systems used in the Netherlands to profile Eastern Europeans and Roma for ‘pick-pocketing’, or secretive lists of suspected criminals such as the UK’s Gang Matrix, there is a growing reliance on criminal risk-scoring technologies by police forces across Europe.”

Find out more at Algorithmwatch.org, a European-wide resource on the impact of “automating society”

 

ALBANIA

Mosque Stabbing in Albania Raises Questions on Rise of Islamophobia, Morocco World News, 20 April 2021

“Rudolf Nikolli entered the mosque following the afternoon prayer and stabbed five men aged 22-35.”

 

DENMARK

By demonising asylum seekers, Denmark reflects a panic in social democracy, The Guardian, 18 April 2021

“Forcing Syrians to return home shows the left apeing the far right in a race to the bottom”

 

FRANCE

French debate on ‘secular values’ opens in a climate of political hostility, RFI, 21 April 2021

As the government launches a series of discussion groups on the place of religion in contemporary French society, the battle lines are already drawn. The proposed broad public debate on the troubled relationship between faith and state has been criticised as divisive and unnecessary across the political spectrum.

 

Meet France’s first female imam who is on a mission to modernise Islam, Euronews, 21 April 2021

“In 2018, she announced the creation of “Fatma Mosque”, a place of worship where men and women pray together, where prayers are led by both male and female imams, where sermons are delivered in French, and where non-Muslims are welcome. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, however, most activities of this “inclusive mosque” have been transferred online.”

 

French row over mosque isn’t simply about state financing – it runs deep into Islamophobia and French secularism, The Conversation, 15 April 2021

“Construction of what is slated to be the largest mosque in Europe – and especially the state’s role in its financing – has sparked controversy for many reasons.”

 

GREECE

Rectify this wrong’: the immigrants in Greece who can’t book Covid jabs, The Guardian, 20 April 2021

“In a country where inoculation is linked to ownership of a social security number, many have slipped through the net…“There are 70,000 residents here under the golden visa scheme alone, let alone retirees,” she said. “To obtain residency permits we’ve had to get private health insurance but that has been the condition, never AMKA.””

 

GERMANY

Berlin State Ballet settles with dancer over racism allegations, Deutsche Welle, 22 April 2021

“Ballerina Chloe Lopes Gomes will stay with the Berlin State Ballet. A settlement has been reached after the dancer accused Berlin’s principal ballet company of racism”

 

SWITZERLAND

Swiss record almost 600 cases of racial discrimination in 2020, Swissinfo, 18 April 20212

“Overall, xenophobia was found to be the most frequent motive (304 cases), followed by discrimination against black people (206 cases) and Muslims (55 cases).”

Read the Report in French here or German here

 

Image Credits: Pixabay

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