Dear Readers,

Welcome to the latest edition of the “Black & Asian News”!

According to the TUC, just 1-in-218 workplaces have been inspected by a workplace safety regulator during the pandemic (from March 2020 to April 2021). As Social Europe observes, workers in insecure jobs have to “shoulder more risk of infection during this pandemic, while facing the triple blow of a lack of sick pay, fewer rights and endemic low pay.”

New medical research has also revealed that current Body Mass Index (BMI) values would need to be amended to account for ethnicity and that the current BMI system may leave BAME people ‘unknowingly at risk’ of type 2 diabetes.

Please keep scrolling to read UK news!

Keep Well & Stay Safe,

Thushari Perera


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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EU citizens arriving in UK being locked up and expelled, The Guardian, 13 May 2021

“Europeans with job interviews tell of detentions and expulsions despite rules allowing non-visa holders to attend interviews”

The EU-India Summit: Gearing up for global challenges, Euractiv, 13 May 2021

“In recent years, the EU lost its position as India’s top trading partner to China and the US (the EU accounted for €62.8 billion goods trade with India in 2020 or 11.1% of India’s total trade as compared to China and the US at 12% and 11.7% respectively).”

EU–Africa relations: a partnership delayed but not derailed, Euractiv, 12 May 2021

“Africa does not need charity, it needs true and fair partnerships. And Europe needs this partnership just as much,” Juncker told the European Parliament in Strasbourg.


Awareness of East Asian racism growing following Atlanta shootings, Copenhagen Post, 8 May 2021

“Danes are very curious, and they trust their media a lot. It annoys me when major Danish media only make fun of us and use dated video clips when reporting about China’s controversies. And then people repeat the term the media used: ‘Asian virus’ or ‘China virus’.”


Macron’s party bans Muslim candidate for wearing hijab in poster, Al Jazeera, 12 May 2021

“Sara Zemmahi was planning to run with LREM in local elections, but has been criticised by the far right and the LREM itself.”


Rethinking diversity… together, The Bookseller, 13 May 2021

“Germany is as much a multicultural country as the UK… Among many examples of good practice discussed on the day was Nikola Richter’s “open publishing year” (Jahr des offenen Verlags), during which she opened up her publishing house for guest publishers and their communities to publish their book projects under her roof – an inspiring and successful process during which everyone involved learned a lot, not least with the interactive antiracist ‘ally guide’ Dear Discrimination. As another example the Neue deutsche Medienmacher*innen (the ‘new German media creators’, a collective that works to empower BIPoC journalists and other media people, co-founded by Ferda Ataman), have compiled a “Diversity Guide” for German media organisations…”

Has COVID fueled racism? Germany sees dramatic rise in complaints, Deutsche Welle, 11 May 2021

“Germany’s anti-discrimination agency has a recorded a 78% rise in calls for help since last year. That is more than ever before, with the Black Lives Matter movement and the coronavirus pandemic seen as drivers.”

Berlin: Thousands Protest Against Alleged Police Brutality, The Berlin Spectator, 8 May 2021

“In Berlin, some 5,000 people rallied against claimed brutality and racism in the German police on Saturday.”

German Greens slam party’s own mayor over racist language, AP, 8 May 2021

“BERLIN (AP) — Leaders of Germany’s Greens on Saturday slammed the mayor of Tuebingen, a member of their own party, for using a racist slur in a social media post about a black soccer player.”


Ireland at a crossroads on journey to stamp out racism, RTE, 7 May 2021

“…the Government begins a Public Consultation on Anti-Racism in Ireland, which will feed into a National Anti-Racism Plan due to be published at the end of the year…”


Italy hopeful on reviving EU migrant burden sharing deal, Euractiv, 13 May 2021

“Draghi said “active talks are ongoing with Germany and France to revive” the so-called Malta agreement, under which a number of EU countries agreed in 2019 to share the number of migrants who arrive in Italy or Malta… So far this year, some 13,000 sea migrants have landed on Italy’s shores — a sizeable increase from around 4,200 and 1,100 respectively for the same period in 2020 and 2019.”


Norwegian PM Condemns ‘Structural Racism’ in Her Country, Sputnik News, 14 May 2021

“Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg has joined the debate on racism that has blossomed in the country’s media and public life in recent weeks.”




One in four EU citizens fear discrimination compared to UK nationals, Euractiv, 13 May 2021

“The survey of 3,000 EU nationals resident in the UK by the Independent Monitoring Authority for the Citizens’ Rights Agreements (IMA), also underscored a general lack of trust in UK public bodies.”

EU countries snub Priti Patel’s plans to return asylum seekers, The Guardian, 9 May 2021

“Not a single European country has decided to support the UK government’s controversial asylum plans, with the UN on Saturday night criticising the proposals as so damaging they risked Britain’s “global credibility”.”

Mandatory voter ID would dangerously undermine UK democracy, The Guardian, 12 May 2021

“According to official figures, 3.5 million people do not have access to photo ID in the UK and 11 million don’t have a passport or a driving licence. Unlike most countries where ID is required to vote, the UK has no free or low-cost ID option.”

Does ‘Global Britain’ care about the poorest?: UK’s moral authority reduced by ‘short-sighted’ cuts, says academic, The Courier, 8 May 2021

“…the UK government’s recent decision to cut the UK’s foreign aid budget and research funding by £4 billion from 0.7% of national income to 0.5%…  ‘At the same time that Britain has done this incidentally, other countries of the G7 have actually increased their ODA – France by about 10 or 11%. I understand the USA, for crying out loud, has increased it by about 5%.’”

Celebrities unite to back #StopAsianHate campaign, The Guardian, 9 May 2021

“Marvel film stars Gemma Chan and Benedict Wong among prominent east and south-east Asian people taking action on UK’s wave of Covid-related Sinophobia”


Anthony Brown: the man who resisted deportation – then fought tirelessly for Windrush survivors, The Guardian, 12 May 2021

“When he applied to university in the 80s, Brown was told to leave the UK. Decades later, finally awarded a law degree, he set about helping people who had been targeted by the Home Office”

Community groups invited to celebrate Hackney’s Windrush generation, Hackney Gazette, 11 May 2021

“Microgrants between £500 and £1000 are available to community groups and events or activities selected will be part of the borough’s Windrush Generations Festival in June 2021…Successful applicants will feature on a new Hackney Windrush website as part of Hackney’s Windrush Art Commission in partnership with Create London supported by Freelands Foundation.”

Are institutions failing missing Black people and their families?, The Canary, 8 May 2021

“Police have found a body in their search for missing Bristol student Olisa Odukwe. They are carrying out the formal identification process, and aren’t treating the death as suspicious. It comes at a moment in which many are accusing the police and mainstream media of failing to provide support and answers for the families of missing People of Colour.”

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Pride in London apologises for racism and bullying, vows to be ‘anti-racist’, Pink News, 13 May 2021

“Pride in London said it would implement its “Proud of Pride” plan before its next event in September. As part of this plan, Pride in London said it would diversify its leadership team so it is “at least 50 per cent representative of minority and ethnic voices”, which it said was a process that was already underway.”

UK Black Pride launches first-of-its-kind survey to find out what life is really like for queer Black Brits, Pink News/Yahoo Sport, 7 May 2021

“Titled We Will Be Heard, the survey will be used to inform UK Black Pride’s first Community Action Plan, which will decide where funding should be invested in order to best support the community.”

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Met Police officer harassed and bullied female Muslim colleague, hearing concludes, TellMama, 9 May 2021

“The panel concluded, “that there was premeditation, abuse of trust, targeting, repeated and sustained behaviour amounting to bullying and harassment.””

14 Essex rabbis sign letter of solidarity after Muslims pelted with eggs, Jewish News, 7 May 2021

“Woodford Forest’s Rabbi Wollenberg organised a show of unity after Islamic worshippers were targeted this week, branding the incident ‘deplorable and indefensible’”


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Video: Trevor McDonald and Charlene White: Has George Floyd Changed Britain?, ITV, 12 May 2021

“Approaching the anniversary of George Floyd’s death, Trevor McDonald and Charlene White explore the impact of his death on people in the UK.”


Apply to FLAMIN Animations, FilmLondon, May 2021

“Film London and Arts Council England present FLAMIN Animations, a new programme of commissions for four early-career black-identifying* artist animators living in the UK.”

US prod co The Corner Shop returns to London, Televisual, 11 May 2021

“The Corner Shop London says it will “actively level the field for important, diverse voices and perspectives” with a string of strategic signings being announced.”

BBC announces new Steve McQueen three-parter, Televisual, 11 May 2021

“BBC One has announced a new Steve McQueen three-parter, Uprising. The new series examines three events from 1981 – in January, the New Cross Fire which killed 13 black teenagers; in March, Black People’s Day of Action, which saw more than 20,000 people join the first organised mass protest by black British people; and the Brixton riots in April.”

Akala: Why we need more black, working class period drama, BBC News, 9 May 2021

“Most of the period drama we get is usually focused on elites. Kings and queens and ‘great men’ – so to speak,” he tells Radio 1 Newsbeat. “I want people to be able to imagine and historicise a black experience, specifically a black working class experience, and hopefully relate to that.”


Anne Boleyn comes to Channel 5 as thriller told through queen’s eyes, The Guardian, 7 May 2021

“The show has also sparked much debate online, not least for its casting of a black Anne Boleyn. The Queen & Slim actor Jodie Turner-Smith, who is of Jamaican descent, plays a regal yet steely Boleyn, with Paapa Essiedu – the British actor of Ghanaian heritage, recently Bafta-nominated for the BBC hit I May Destroy You – portraying her brother, George.”

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Do British Asian Women still like Wearing Ethnic Clothes?, DesiBlitz, 11 May 2021

“Many South Asians opt for a more British look to their fashion as opposed to utilising their ethnic clothing. Is Desi clothing losing its charm?… South Asian casualwear could very well be an avenue for fashionistas to explore.”


Black & Asian Heritage Mix’


Mary Beard to fund classics students from under-represented groups, The Guardian, 14 May 2021

“The fund will cover the £10,000-a-year living costs of two undergraduates, who will be required to come both from a minority ethnic group and low income background, and will cover the duration of a four-year degree. “It’s a retirement present from me,” said Beard, a classics professor who has taught at Cambridge for almost 40 years.”

What progress have we made since the launch of #ClosingTheGap?, UK Universities, 11 May 2021

“When the report was published, the headline was a 13% gap between white students receiving a first or 2:1 degree classification (80.9%) and BAME students (67.7%). Disaggregating the data shows even starker inequalities. Between 2014 and 2019, the awarding gap only narrowed by 5% between white and black students (from a 32% to a 27% gap). However, the data shows that in the last year alone, the gap between white and black students closed by 5% (to a 22% gap).”

Drive for more student diversity paying off, says Oxford University, The Guardian, 11 May 2021

“Institution doubles proportion of new students from disadvantaged backgrounds in five years”

Creating a school community in an age of diversity, TES, 10 May 2021

“International schools with a mix of cultures need to work at achieving a common set of shared values”


This charity is teaching children that Black British history is British history, The Canary, 8 May 2021

“AQA has approved Black Learning Achievement and Mental Health UK (BLAM) to deliver educational units on Black British history. The achievement comes in the wake of government attempts to whitewash British history as set out in its recent race disparities report.”


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‘The Class Ceiling’ author advises No 10 on social mobility policy, Transforming Society, 11 May 2021

“Sam Friedman and Daniel Laurison’s book The Class Ceiling: Why it Pays to be Privileged exposes the over-representation of people from privileged backgrounds across elite industries such as broadcasting, accountancy, architecture and acting.”


Insecure in work, vulnerable to infection, Social Europe, 11 May 2021

“What we do know, though, is that, throughout the pandemic, workers in insecure employment have reported not having access to adequate or sufficient personal protective equipment to protect themselves and members of the public…Workers in insecure jobs are having to shoulder more risk of infection during this pandemic, while facing the triple blow of a lack of sick pay, fewer rights and endemic low pay.”

40% of Brits are still afraid to say the word ‘Black’ in the workplace, Metro, 11 May 2021

“These findings come from The Diversity & Confusion Report by The Unmistakables, which surveyed 1,522 UK workers in March 2021. They found that while the majority of those surveyed (88%) agreed that the diversity and inclusion agenda is important, less than half (46%) said they engage with it.”

Fire and rehire: Britain’s new labour battleground?, AFP/Yahoo, 9 May 2021

“A survey of 2,231 workers by the Trades Union Congress umbrella group found almost one in 10 were told to reapply for their jobs on worse terms or face dismissal, with young and ethnic-minority workers disproportionately affected.”

Video: Can businesses aid in the fight against racism?, Deutsche Welle, 7 May 2021

“Racism is a global problem. Following the death of George Floyd, large companies felt compelled to react to the Black Lives Matter movement. What role does the business world play in the fight against racism?”


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BMI system may leave BAME people ‘unknowingly at risk’ of type 2 diabetes, Central Fife Times & Advertiser, 11 May 2021

“As a doctor, I’m extremely concerned that if the current BMI values are not amended to account for ethnicity, many BAME people will needlessly slip through the net, leaving them unknowingly at risk of type 2 diabetes…”

SURVEY: Welcome to the information page for the Evidence for Equality National Survey (EVENS): Documenting the Lives of Ethnic and Religious Minorities in a Time of Crisis, Ipsos Mori, 2021

“We want to find out how the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdowns are affecting ethnic minority people in England, Scotland, and Wales. We will ask about how different areas of your life have been affected e.g. education, employment and economic wellbeing, housing, social, political participation, health, and experiences of racism and discrimination.”

A review of Personal Health Budgets for people from Black and minority ethnic communities, Race Equality Foundation, May 2021

“This briefing builds on from our previous work where we engaged with people who had Personal Health Budgets, commissioners and voluntary sector organisations. We found a range of barriers faces by Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people in receipt of S117 care in trying to access and use PHBs…Read the full report can be found here.


Why Do We Think Of Eating Disorders As A “White” Illness? , Vogue, 8 May 2021

“Eating disorders don’t discriminate – yet they’re still perceived largely as a problem that affects thin white women”

The University of Bradford in fight to tackle the big diabetes problem in the city, Yorkshire Post, 8 May 2021

“This event will…try to ascertain what diabetes diagnosis and care will look like in 10 years, and ask how we prepare our healthcare system for this.”

‘Distressing’ report finds more than half of BAME GP staff face racism at work, Pulse, 6 May 2021

“More than half of black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) primary care staff have experienced racism at work coming from either patients or fellow colleagues, a report by an LMC has found.”




Young BAME residents in east London to benefit from the ‘Blue Connections’ scheme, Eastern Eye, 12 May 2021

“Blue Connections, focused on Barking Creek and the River Roding (Thames tributary), aims to improve people’s understanding and appreciation of rivers and boost their skills, employability and mental health. The project in Barking & Dagenham and Newham targets young people from BAME communities, which currently account for just three per cent of workers in the environmental sector across the UK.”



Nonprofits sought for survey on digital fundraising & race, UK Fundraising, 13 May 2021

“Strategic consultancy I.G Advisors, along with sister company Lightful, Unbound Philanthropy and other leaders in the racial justice sector are seeking nonprofits doing work with communities of colour in the UK to fill in a survey on their experiences of digital fundraising and race.”

Google’s search filters not fit for purpose, say analysts, Jewish Chronicle, 13 May 2021

“Report by two charities says a ‘SafeSearch’ tool created by the tech company fails to eliminate antisemitic content”


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Naomi Dattani on importance of pro contracts, and difficulties of mixing culture with elite sport, BBC Sports, 13 May 2021

“I’ve always been told I’ve got ‘potential’, but I’ve never been able to just give everything. Education would get in the way, or cultural pressures, or work.”

Linford Christie: Britain’s fastest ever sprinter on race, patriotism and persistence, The Guardian, 13 May 2021

“From running to the shops in Jamaica to wrapping himself in the Union Jack, the Olympian has had phenomenal highs and bruising lows. He looks back on an extraordinary life in athletics”

Image Credits: Pixabay

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