The Race Crisis Summit called by Black organisations to formulate a response to the CEHR.
The government has pushed through the Bill to scrap the Commission for Racial Equality (CRE). It is being replaced with a new Commission for Equality and Human Rights (CEHR). This commission will be looking at issues of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, age, faith and human rights.
Black organisations including The 1990 Trust, OBV, BLF and NAAR working alongside faith groups, MPs and individuals believe Black communties are being foisted with a paper tiger: The CEHR lacks guaranteed BME representation, adequate resources and a statutory race committee, all of which are required to make it an effective body for delivering race equality.
Over generations Black communities have fought for and won significant battles for race equality. There is still much to do, but even the gains made thus far will be lost because of this agenda. The government's current proposals will make race equality subject to the whim of the commissioners and the government of the day. We believe this is a regressive step on the part of the government.
We feel that the legacy of race equality is under threat. We must act now to both preserve and build upon that legacy. Therefore we are refusing to co-operate with the CEHR at this juncture. We urge all organisations and individuals with an interest in race equality to support our campaign calling for:
- A statutory 'race committee' on the CEHR;
- Guaranteed BME representation on the full CEHR Commission;
- Ring-fenced funding for race work; and
- The retention and reform of the CRE.