Response to the report of the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities

The report of the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities was commissioned in the wake of last summer’s mass protests in over sixty countries and over several localities in Britain following the killing of George Floyd in the USA. The Black Lives Matter movement and mass protests meant that the struggle for racial justice become more relevant than ever.

The report’s main theme is an attempt to shift decades of understanding of the role of structural factors in determining the life chances of Britain’s ethnic minority population, to a focus on the failings of groups and individuals. The narrative of the report presents a view that for some ethnic minority groups, they have ‘never had it so good’. Whilst for others their lack of success or progress is reflective of the inability to grasp the boundless opportunities. Within this perspective, the importance of notions of institutional and structural racism, in understanding race and ethnic disparities/inequality are out of favour.

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