BME
black UK

Legislation, institutional practices and society’s customs continue to harm BME groups, Runnymede Trust report says

Source: The Guardian

A comprehensive review on race equality in England has warned that the government’s approach is at risk of failing international human rights obligations.

The report, compiled by the Runnymede Trust using evidence from more than 100 civil society organisations since 2016, shows that systemic racism remains a stark issue and that legislation, institutional practices and society’s customs continue to harm BME groups. It is presented to the UN committee on the elimination of racial discrimination and is used as a barometer to assess member countries’ progress on race equality.

Published in the wake of an unprecedented global pandemic and worldwide protests following the murder of George Floyd in the US, it states that disparities facing black and minority ethnic (BME) groups in England are sustained across the areas of health, the criminal justice system, education, employment, immigration and politics. The general trend from the data shows that inequality along racial lines has escalated since the same report was released five years ago.

Endorsed by 78 NGOs and race equality organisations, key findings include:

  • Black people are about 18 times more likely to be searched than their white counterparts.
  • BME children make up over half of the child population in prison (28% are black). This is an increase of 15% over the past decade.
  • By the end of secondary school, Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils are almost three years behind their white counterparts, and black Caribbean students are 11 months behind their white British counterparts.
  • BME people with learning disabilities die younger than their white counterparts; there is a 26-year difference between white and BME people with profound and multiple learning disabilities.
  • Had the white population experienced the same risk of death from Covid-19 as black groups, there would have been an estimated 58,000 additional deaths between March and May 2020.
  • In 2019, 90% of Australian nationals were released before spending 28 days in detention compared with 60% of Nigerian nationals and 40% of Jamaican nationals.

Read the full article on The Guardian’s website.

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