Chelmsford City Council sets up anti-racism action group

June 15, 2020 8:03 AM

Black lives matterAn anti-racism action group is being set up for Chelmsford, chaired by the Mayor, Cllr Jude Deakin. The Mayor will shortly convene a meeting of relevant local community representatives to draw up a list of actions to ensure that the Council's pledges on diversity and equality are being met.

The Council's action group will have input from the Council's Diversity Champion Cllr Lee Ashley and Cabinet Deputy Cllr Smita Rajesh and the support of Council Leader Stephen Robinson and Deputy Leader Marie Goldman.

Commented Council Leader Stephen Robinson: "It is a tragedy that racism is still rife in society - in Britain and elsewhere, not just in America. The recent protests highlight the fact that too many people are hurting. Black lives matter and real change is overdue.

"Chelmsford City Council aims to treat everyone with dignity and respect, irrespective of their background, ethnicity or any other part of their identity. That is a human right. If we ever fail to do that, we want you to let us know.

"Every one of us has a role to play in seeking to eliminate racism and hatred, but especially elected authorities and public services.

"Fairness is something we often talk about at Chelmsford City Council and we try to make it part of everything we do. But we believe we can do more. We will listen to our residents, particularly from minority communities, to help us shape our future actions and policies.

"Banishing systemic racism and prejudice isn't going to happen overnight; it is something we must all fight for every day. There is hard work to be done and it will take time. We don't have all of the answers now, but we will listen. We want our actions to reflect our commitment to equality and encourage change in our city."

There are two strands of action planned - internal to the Council, ensuring that its own processes are up to date, and external leadership in the wider community.

If you have been affected by racism, you can contact Stop Hate UK on 0800 138 1625.