“The narrative we see in the Daily Mail and by Mr Phillips himself feed into a misguided belief that there are minority communities up and down the county trying to curtail debate and freedom of speech. This diverts our attention, perhaps conveniently, away from having conversations about the daily occurrences of discrimination experienced by minority communities and the complex conditions which create unrest.” (The Guardian)
Franstine Jones, President of the National Black Police Association (NBPA) says, “This programme has been aired during a time when ‘race’ issues have been left to stagnate in the ‘long-grass’ and immigration and race are being stoked and toxically conflated in the run up to the General Election. The timing of this programme; requires that we analyse not just its content but also the motivations of its creator –Trevor Phillips.
Programmes of this nature, present inherent dangers through their populist appeal. They can serve as ‘credible’ reference points by reinforcing stereotypes about Black and Minority Ethnic Groups. This runs counter to stark facts about the reality of race in Britain for BME groups. For instance, you are 6 times more likely to be stopped and searched if you are Black. An overwhelming number of stops and search result in no further action and racial profiling has negative and detrimental impact on young black
Trevor Phillips talks about institutions such as the police failing to act for fear of offending minority groups. Our experience run’s counter to Phillip’s ‘populist’ claims.
Inaction in the context of the police, is more likely to be the result of a lack of meaningful engagement with BME communities and the failure to actively engage and involve Black staff support associations who bring a lived experience to the race debate.
We agree that it is time for a grown up conversation about race. However, that conversation must hear uncomfortable truths from both sides. As BME people, we are statistically more likely to be on the receiving end of the ‘isms and schisms’. We need to be the driver and not the passenger of this important conversation. The NBPA welcomes the opportunity to talk about race and the impact of racism with all partners in the criminal justice family. So that we can address the detrimental treatment of BME officers