Dear Readers,

This week we learnt that the number of children on free school meals has risen to 1.7 million. As you will see in the news stories below, power holders seem however more concerned about a right-wing TV news channel, GB News, that claims to be an alternative to mainstream media. GB News say that they find other British media “increasingly woke and out of touch with the majority of its people”. Some major companies have already withdrawn their advertising from GB News after campaigning by organisations as “Stop Funding Hate”, but it is difficult to know how long this will last.

What has not been discussed enough in the media arena is how rife structural racism is for so-called “gig workers”, particularly for women from black and minority ethnic backgrounds who are more likely to be on a zero-hour contract, according to new research by the TUC and Rota.

A new report on the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) may be of interest to European nationals (together with those from Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland) who live in the UK – including Black, Asian and minority ethnic European citizens.

The article I would recommend reading this week is however on refugees and asylum seekers by EURACTIV titled Africans do not yearn for Europe.

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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GB News boycott ‘attacks our free media’, Culture Secretary warns, MSN News/Daily Mail, 16 June 2021

“Big brands must not ‘succumb to pressure groups’ by pulling adverts from GB News, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden warned last night. He defended the UK’s ‘free and diverse media’ after major companies withdrew commercials following pressure from Left-wing campaigners.”


GB News can be right-wing and offend viewers within impartiality rules, says Ofcom standards head,, 12 March 2021

““There is no absolute right not to be offended by what you see on TV and hear on radio,” asserts Adam Baxter, director of standards and audience protection at media regulator Ofcom… The guardian of “due impartiality”, which lies at the heart of Ofcom’s broadcasting code, he will monitor the arrival of two news channels promising to shake up the television establishment with an unapologetically partisan, right-of-centre take on events…Ofcom’s elastic definition of “due impartiality” gives the insurgents plenty of room to manoeuvre. Broadcasters can interview people with extreme views and air controversial, shocking and offensive content, Baxter said.”




UK supermarket chain drops racist slur from lime leaves branding, CNN, 17 June 2021

“London (CNN Business) British supermarket chain Waitrose will change the name of one of its products to remove a racial slur used in South Africa during apartheid, the company announced Wednesday. The product, formerly known as “Kaffir Lime Leaves,” will have new packaging under the name “Makrut Lime Leaves.””


Do Black Lives Still Matter?Series 1, BBC3, Brands -Episode 1 of 3, 14 June 2021

“Following the death of George Floyd and the surge in the Black Lives Matter movement, big brands made pledges to address diversity and racial inequalities across their businesses. Grime artist Saskilla speaks to black influencers about being flavour of the month for some brands. He speaks to insiders from a number of companies, including household brands, and looks at social media accounts before, during and after the BLM protests.”


‘It’s used as a tool of oppression:’ Priya Ahluwalia on why her new collection celebrates black hair, The Evening Standard, 16 June 2021

“London-based fashion designer Priya Ahluwalia is discussing her experiences as an Indian-Nigerian woman growing up in London, and the way these experiences have informed her spring summer 22 collection, Parts of Me; which was conceived as a celebration of Afro-Caribbean and Indian hair, its artistry, symbolism, and rituals.”


OPINION: In 2021, it is time to have more Black executives in boardrooms, Thomas Reuters Foundation, 11 June 2021

“In more than six decades, there have only been 21 Black CEOs out of 1,800. Adding more Black executives to boards will increase shareholder value. Companies have been complacent for too long”


One In Three Experience Racial Discrimination, Fetishisation, Or Microaggressions When Dating Online, The Independent, 16 June 2021

“New research reveals that one in three people in the UK have experienced racial discrimination, fetishisation or microaggressions when dating online… More than half (53 per cent) of people in the UK don’t have a clear understanding of what fetishisation is. Fetishisation is a sexual fascination with things that are not inherently sexual, such as race, gender, sexuality or body type.”



TUC Report BME workers on O hours contracts

Gig work rife with ‘structural racism’, Personnel Today, 14 June 2021

“The problem is particular acute for women from black and minority ethnic backgrounds, found research by the TUC and campaigners Race on the Agenda (Rota).”


Three per cent ‘directors of colour’ in UK’s small firms, Eastern Eye, 16 June 2021

“Fewer than three per cent of 261 smaller companies’ board members are identified as ‘director of colour’, a study has revealed.”


City diversity standards in the spotlight as two reports show challenges faced by ethnic minorities, women, Proactive Investors UK, 16 June 2021

“Nearly half of Black employees have experienced racism at work, along with 26% East Asian, 23% South Asia and 24% of mixed Race workers, according to a study conducted by City Mental Health Alliance in partnership with Lloyds Banking Group PLC (LON:LLOY).”


Working a shift in a Michelin-starred kitchen proved I am not the answer to the hospitality staff shortage, inews, 14 June 2021

“Brexit and covid double whammy have left hospitality in a pickle…The trade body UKHospitality said there was a shortfall of almost 200,000 staff and that 80 per cent of its members have vacancies at the moment…Hospitality is the UK’s third largest employer and contributes more to the economy than pharmaceuticals and automotive combined.”


Two in five recruiters not recording diversity of own firms, Personnel Today, 14 June 2021

“Two in five (41%) recruitment firms are not recording the demographic make-up of their workforce and could find it challenging to identify which groups are underrepresented…“The glaring finding of the report is a lack of effective diversity monitoring in some recruitment businesses. As the old saying goes, what gets measured gets managed, so effective data collection needs to spread more broadly across the industry,” said Neil Carberry, chief executive of the REC.”



Leicester Uni Tackling Racial Inequalities in Assessment in HE

Inclusive curriculum will ensure “HE is fit for the 21st century”, says Leicester academic, University of Leicester, 4 June 2021

“The report found that the lack of a sufficiently diverse curriculum and faculty meant it was often difficult for black students to be able to connect content and assessments directly to their own lived realities, meaning black students had to “work harder than their peers to connect with both assessment and curriculum content – a point remarked upon by both white and BAME students.””


Girls of colour more likely to be ‘sexually harassed at school’, The Independent, 15 June 2021

“A study by Girlguiding, the largest girl-only youth organisation in the UK, discovered two thirds of all girls have suffered sexual harassment at school from fellow pupils…Girls of colour were found to be more likely to be sexually harassed both in school and in public spaces away from the school gates than their white classmates. While around four in ten girls of colour had suffered stalking in school, only a quarter of white girls had experienced this.”


Number of children on free school meals in England soars to 1.7m, The Guardian, 17 June 2021

“Tulip Siddiq, the shadow minister for children, said: “Thousands more families are reliant on free school meals to stop children going hungry, yet the Conservative government is offering food on just 16 of 30 weekdays this summer holiday.””



Dad Book

‘I got PTSD after witnessing my daughter’s birth’, BBC News, 16 June 2021

“After the distressing birth of his daughter, Elliott Rae struggled with post traumatic stress disorder, but went without help for over a year. He’s now urging dads to talk about their problems – and to avoid the agony he went through…In January 2016 Elliott set up a parenting and lifestyle platform for dads called Music Football Fatherhood (MFF). It was an outlet to talk about being a new parent, though he didn’t talk about the traumatic birth or PTSD until recently.”


How coronavirus is affecting BAME and migrants funerals, Oureconomy, 15 June 2021

“For many BAME families, funerals, weddings and initiation celebrations in some traditions, are rites of passage, they mark important moments in people’s lives. Many people from BAME backgrounds have certain cultural rituals they carry out before their loved ones are committed to be buried…”


Mental Health and Race at Work research shows negative impact of racism and Covid 19 on workplace wellbeing, City Mental Health Alliance UK, 16 June 2021

“45% of Black people have experienced racism at work in the UK; 44 % of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic workers feel they need to change aspects of their behaviour to fit in; Nearly two thirds of all workers (60%), believe that COVID-19 has had a negative impact on their mental health and wellbeing…”


UK health inequalities made worse by Covid crisis, study suggests, The Guardian, 14 June 2021

“The research, led by UCL and the University of Glasgow, found further evidence that minority ethnic groups were more likely to have their healthcare affected by the Covid crisis than white people, with the combined results of the 12 studies suggesting minority ethnic groups reported 19% more problems during the epidemic.“


NHS Health Checks are not helping people who need them most, Queen Mary University of London, 14 June 2021

“We already know heart disease disproportionally affects people living in the most deprived areas. We also found that new diagnoses of diabetes, high blood pressure and chronic kidney disease were all associated with higher levels of deprivation. NHS Health Checks identified more new disease such as diabetes and high blood pressure in people from South Asian and black African/Caribbean ethnic groups and those living in more disadvantaged areas. NHS Health Checks are positioned to help tackle heart disease, but in their current form they offer the majority of attendees very little.”




Report – The EU Settlement Scheme, UK in a changing Europe, 16 June 2021

“The EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) allows EU nationals who arrived by 31 December 2020 (and some others) to protect their rights to live and work in the UK. The aim of this report is to explain the scheme, its background, how it works, who has applied, who may not have, and the lessons we have learned so far.”


‘Fall in love at your own peril’: Forcing British citizens to leave the UK, BritCits, 4 June 2021

“Drawing on interviews with couples and practitioners, including some BritCits members, the ‘Deportability and the Family’ project looks at the human impact of immigration policies that have eroded Article 8 rights to respect for private and family life. Spousal Visas: Since 2012, spousal visas have been conditional on the British spouse earning a steady annual income of £18,600 (increasing with each non-British child). The sum can only be met by the British partner.”


Conditions at a Home Office housing unit deny mums and babies a ‘sense of safety’, The Canary, 14 June 2021

“Various campaigners in Glasgow, coming together as “the Roof Coalition”, are demanding the Home Office closes this unit that accommodates over 20 women and their babies. The Roof Coalition’s #FreedomToCrawl campaign calls on the public: ‘to take action to ensure that every baby and child in Glasgow has access to safe, suitable housing—including those in the asylum process.’”




UK set to end legal loophole allowing child marriage, Reuters, 16 June 2021

“…the current law, which allows marriage at 16 with parental consent, sabotaged girls’ futures and condoned child abuse… The government has also said it is committed to lifting the minimum age to 18… More than 2,740 under-18s were married in England and Wales between 2008 and 2017, according to official data, but this figure excludes minors wed in traditional ceremonies or taken abroad to marry.”


Old and white prisoners most likely to be treated with respect, new study reports, The Justice Gap, 16 June 2021

“Only six out of 10 black prisoners aged under 30 years of age felt they were being treated with respect by prison staff  compared to more than nine out of 10 for those aged 70 years or over, according to a new study… (published in the Howard Journal) draws on more than 60,000 prisoner surveys conducted between 2010 and 2019 collected by HM Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP).”



Grenfell Forever in Our Hearts


Grenfell survivor Antonio Roncolato is still fight for ‘truth and justice’, The Big Issue, 13 June 2021

“Ahead of the fourth anniversary of the disaster that claimed the lives of 72 of his neighbours, Grenfell survivor Antonio Roncolato tells The Big Issue why the fight for ‘truth and justice’ will not stop…They put profit before human life. We have seen them come up to the stand and not one of them has said sorry or held their hands up and said that we got it wrong”



Black & Asian Heritage Mix’



Priti Patel Taking the Knee for England

Priti Patel does not support England players taking the knee and says fans have right to boo, The Independent, 14 June 2021

“The Home Secretary said she does not ‘subscribe to the view that we should be rewriting our history”


Lilian Thuram: Amid England-Scotland debate, France legend and anti-racism campaigner has say on taking knee – and much more, The Scotsman, 13 June 2021

“Those people in the stadiums booing are effectively saying, ‘we don’t want politics to come into football, we want things to stay exactly the way they are’. But not wanting change in football or society is in itself a political position. Football does not exist outside of politics; it is part of the world. Having sponsors’ logos on your shirt, the naming of stadiums, all of these things are part of a wider political and economic structure and you cannot just choose the bits you want. “There is nothing more political than football. And the ridiculous talk of a Marxist agenda in it, seems to miss the fact that football is the best way of selling capitalism at the moment…”


Booing those who take the knee is racist – it really is as simple as that, The Independent, 13 June 2021

“Attempting to “educate” the booers and their apologists about the difference between Black Lives Matter organisations and Black Lives Matter as a slogan, a principle and a stone-cold fact is a waste of my time. For I do not believe I would be attempting to enlighten naive or ill-educated people. I would be attempting to convince racists – and I am confident I would have more success convincing my kitchen table.”



Tech Nation The D & I Toolkit

Introducing: The Diversity & Inclusion Toolkit, Tech Nation, 16 June 2021

“…data shows a continued disparity in representation and venture capital investment for underrepresented groups, illustrating the need for practical Diversity and Inclusion guidance for tech businesses. We are delighted to be able to introduce the Diversity & Inclusion Toolkit…”



heater painting-789627_640

Poorer households in UK should get free heat pumps, say experts, The Guardian, 17 June 2021

“Households on low incomes should be supplied with free heat pumps in order to kickstart the market for low-carbon heating equipment and meet the UK’s climate targets, experts have told the government.”

UK refuses to commit to immediate lowering of air pollution limits, The Guardian, 17 June 2021

Ella Kissi-Debrah was the first person in the UK to have air pollution listed as a cause of their death in a historic ruling by a coroner earlier this year…Sarah Woolnough, the chief executive of Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation, said the government’s plans just scratched the surface of the health impacts of toxic air. “Air pollution causes new lung conditions and worsens existing ones. It can even trigger life-threatening asthma attacks and COPD [chronic obstructive pulmonary disease] flare-ups … We need ambitious new laws that tackle the cause of the problem, with targets that meet the coroner’s recommendation to adopt World Health Organization guidelines.”



Brexit Europe

Africans do not yearn for Europe, EURACTIV, 15 June 2021

“Continually presenting the other side of the wall as a place of hunger, poverty and violence lacks rigour and feeds the narrative of the European El Dorado – a no more accurate image… Around 75% of African migration movements occur within the continent itself. The remaining 25% go to America, Asia or Europe. When it comes to West Africa, the balance is around 90%/10%. African movement is thus fundamentally intracontinental and inter- or intraregional.”


Intra-EU mobility of seasonal workers: Trends and challenges, European Commission, 15 June 2021

“The study identifies key challenges faced by intra-EU seasonal workers, such as lack of access to information about their rights, inadequate social protection, poor accommodation, low pay and challenging working conditions. These challenges were aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic, with many seasonal workers not being able to carry out their work, poor housing being particularly dangerous in times of a pandemic, and non-resident seasonal workers being trapped in countries of work and not able to return home.”



Immigration debate focuses too little on people and too much on targets, Helsinki Times, 16 June 2021

“Finland needs work-based immigration. There is no question about that. Finland’s population is ageing, the birth rate is low and many sectors suffer from labour shortage. This is an issue of growth and vitality.”



OPINION: Enemies of France should not see Le Pen victories on Sunday as a sign of things to come, The Local France, 17 June 2021

“Philippe Vardon, the campaign manager for the far right in the Nice-Marseille area was a leading light in a string of racist splinter groups until 2013. He was once filmed singing neo-Nazi songs and organised the distribution of pork soup to the homeless, to exclude and anger Muslims.  He is now described as the “thinking head” of the Lepennist campaign in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (PACA) which may take 40% of the vote in a very low turn-out on Sunday.”


French Govt. Commissions Study Into ‘Radicalization’ Problems in the Hospital Sector,, 8 June 2021

“News of the study stoked controversy, however, with health professionals arguing on social media that the issue of radicalization was a secondary one in the light of overall challenges faced by public hospitals, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. “Don’t worry man, in hospital you could now die of a heart attack because we have no room, but you need to know that we would all be tracked if a nurse prayed in a hospital hall,” tweeted Sabrina Ali Benali, a physician.”


French teachers to get training on religion after Paty beheading, RFI, 16 June 2021

“French education minister Jean-Michel Blanquer is to introduce training for teachers and principals on the place of religion in schools after a new report revealed confusion and fear among teachers, exacerbated by the beheading of school teacher Samuel Paty in October 2020.”


Thousands take to the streets in France as threat of fascism and racism rises, Socialist Worker, 13 June 2021

“Tens of thousands of people marched across France on Saturday against racism, the far right and the government’s assaults on liberties. Organisers said 140 demonstrations took place totalling 150,000 protesters. In Paris, they said, 70,000 took to the streets. Yet the ministry of the interior claims there were 37,000 in all with just 9,000 in the capital.”


Refugees team up with fashion students at Paris upcycling workshop, France24, 15 June 2021

“From old denim fabrics, Afghan refugee Bagher Husseini fashioned a pair of baggy jeans with fringed patches that he hopes will be paraded down a French catwalk later this year.”



‘COVID-19 feeding extremism in Germany’, The Hindu, 15 June 2021

“Germany’s far-right has grown more radical during the COVID-19 pandemic, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Tuesday while presenting a report on threats to the country’s democratic order. Calling right-wing extremism a “major problem”, Seehofer told reporters that the scene had often hijacked more moderate protests against government measures to combat the coronavirus.”


Germany withdraws platoon from Nato mission in Lithuania, BBC News, 16 June 2021

“Germany has recalled a platoon from a Nato mission in Lithuania after reports emerged of troops engaging in racist and anti-Semitic behaviour, as well as sexual assault.”



Has the Black Lives Matter movement changed anything in Ireland?, The Irish Times, 14 June 2021

“In the News Podcast: More needs to be done at a policy level to tackle racism in Ireland”



Migrant worker exploitation: Two people arrested in Florence, Italy, InfoMigrants, 11 June 2021

“Police have arrested a couple that allegedly exploited workers at a leather processing company in central Italy. Chinese, Pakistani and Bangladeshi migrants reportedly had to work 14 hours per day without breaks, for just over three euros per hour.”


Hundreds more migrants arrive in Lampedusa, InfoMigrants, 16 June 2021

“Unaccompanied minors and children were among around 700 migrants who arrived on Lampedusa in the early hours of Tuesday, June 15. Many of the most recent arrivals, stated the German news agency dpa, were from Tunisia. The Italian news agency adnkronos said that the latest arrivals came from Bangladesh, Eritrea, Egypt, Libya, Cameroon, Morocco, Sudan, Pakistan, Togo, Chad, Senegal and Tunisia.”



Why monolinguals ‘cringe’ in a multilingual society, Bilingualism Matters, 4 June 2021

“Investigating the language experiences of migrants in multilingual societies like Luxembourg can shed light on principles of international encounters in global cities. A recent phenomenon of interest is the habit of ‘monolingual cringe’ among English-speaking migrants in Luxembourg.”



The Dutch politician suing the Dutch state for ethnic-profiling, EUObserver, 14 June 2021

“Dutch academic and politician Mpanzu Bamenga was stopped by border police in his home town of Eindhoven for matching the risk profile of a so-called ‘Nigerian money smuggler’”



Spain probing report of sexual assault and prostitution at migrant minor shelter, El Pais, 15 June 2021

“An anonymous complaint described reiterated misconduct at facilities on the island of Gran Canaria, where regional authorities are struggling to provide adequate care following a surge in arrivals”


Image Credits: Pixabay, TUC & Rota, University of Leicester, Dad Book by Elliott Rae, Tech Nation, UK in a Changing Europe.

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