John Denham: Tackling racism means tackling all forms of discrimination

Share
Related Topics

Over the past decade, the Government has worked tirelessly to build a fairer, more equal society. A society where a person's chances and opportunities in life are determined solely by their talent and effort – not by their class, gender, religion, sexuality or race.

The Macpherson Report in 1999 was a wake-up call for all public services and has transformed the way they serve black and minority ethnic communities: no longer simply passively addressing individual racist incidents but actively promoting racial equality and better race relations. This has helped us to make substantial strides towards racial equality.

Across government, our efforts to raise incomes, reduce poverty and promote equality – whether through the minimum wage, Sure Start or housing – has made a real difference to the lives of the most disadvantaged, including those from BME communities.

However, there is still much to do. We know that there are still areas of concern, especially in school exclusions, the national DNA database, and stop and search. But we must also recognise that Britain today is not the same place as it was a decade ago. Migration, the growing importance of community cohesion, and our better understanding of the way in which race interacts with class and other factors, such as religion, have all changed the terms of the debate and made promoting race equality a much more complex challenge.

So we must recognise that we will not succeed in tackling racism without tacking all forms of discrimination, prejudice and inequality. We have to redouble our efforts to promote greater equality for all, and combine that with action to target the specific problems faced by particular groups.

And we have to do that in ways which are fair, and seen to be fair, so that no group is neglected or overlooked. Regardless of class, race, beliefs or anything else: in every community, in every corner of the country – we are on people's side. No favours. No privileges. No special interest groups. Just fairness.

Today, we are a society more comfortable with diversity than ever, more willing to celebrate the many benefits diversity brings. But we cannot yet say we are a society wholly free of prejudice, discrimination and inequality.

Taken from the Communities Secretary's foreword to a report launched yesterday, 'Tackling Race Inequality'

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

 

In Sickness and in Health: 'I'm really happy to be alive and to see Rebecca'

Rebecca Armstrong
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine