Students Staff

4 June 2020

Response from our BAME Staff Forum to recent events

Filed under: Latest news — Laura Mathias @ 10:50 am

The BAME Staff Forum aims to provide a space for staff who identify as BAME/POC to talk about their experiences, share ideas and visions, as well as to support colleagues where this may be needed.  The Forum was founded in order to ensure that racial inequality and racial justice are on the agenda at the University. 

We want to issue the below statement in response to recent events taking place across the world.

The Black Asian and Minority Ethnic community Staff Forum condemns in the strongest terms the killing by the police of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

This comes off the back of a series of racist killings that have taken place over the last couple of months. This includes Tony McDade who was shot and killed by Florida police, Breonna Taylor who was shot and killed by Kentucky police after they broke into her home and Ahmaud Arbery who was shot and killed while out jogging near his home in Georgia.

These are just the most recent of a growing list of Black people who have been killed as a result of police brutality and as a result of racism. And these are just some of the names we know. These are the names that have made the headlines.

In the UK, we know that people from BME backgrounds are more likely to be stopped and searched by the police, are more likely to be subjected to force by the police, make up a disproportionate part of the prison population, receive harsher penalties and longer sentencing, are more likely to be detained under the Mental Health Act, are more likely to be prescribed medication for mental unwellness, but are less likely to receive appropriate treatment for pain. In our own educational context, we know that BME students and staff experience a range of inequalities that result from systemic racism. We also know that many existing power structures continue to marginalise People of Colour and perpetuate anti-Blackness.

We support the protesters fighting for justice for those who have been murdered. We stand in solidarity with the statement issued by the Student Union in support of Black Lives Matter, and acknowledge also our students’ experiences of racism both on and off the campus.

Our Forum provides a place for people who identify as Black or Asian or who are from ethnic minority communities, to share our experiences, discuss ideas and visions, as well as to provide support for colleagues where this is needed.

The Forum was founded in order to ensure that racial inequality and racial justice is on the agenda at the University. We are committed to anti-racism and seek to overturn systems of oppression and inequality at the University and in our communities more broadly.

University of Essex BAME Staff Forum

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