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Call for forum of community and institutional leaders to devise action plan for Newcastle on institutional racism

September 3, 2020 5:20 PM

Cllr Phil Hall at Newcastle City CouncilThe actions of police and politicians in America, driven by a culture of entitlement, white privilege and institutional racism are disgraceful and a stain on the moral fibre of humanity, Liberal Democrats Cllr Phil Hall (pictured) told Newcastle City Council during a debate on Black Lives Matter on 2nd September.

"I am undeniably a beneficiary of that same system of white privilege, doubly fortunate to not live in a country where half the population have guns, where it takes milliseconds for a regular police interaction to turn into violent, unjustifiable murder.

"White people the world over have unwittingly allowed institutional racism to continue and we must all now stand up and be counted in this fight. We need to reach out and listen to the experiences of communities that institutional racism suppresses, and as such I ask the cabinet to take very seriously the request in the motion to setup a local forum of community and institutional leaders. This forum has the potential to go beyond submitting evidence to an inquiry, and could also generate its own reports and actions for us as a council, the police, the NHS and all local institutions, ensuring we understand the diverse experiences of our citizens, however difficult or uncomfortable.

"Whatever our background, we will all benefit from hearing those stories and taking responsibility in actingupon them. In doing so we as institutional leaders can guarantee we are doing everything we possibly can to end racism wherever it takes root."