Public Order

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:49 pm on 8th June 2020.

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Photo of Priti Patel Priti Patel The Secretary of State for the Home Department 4:49 pm, 8th June 2020

I thank the hon. and learned Lady for her remarks and her support for police officers, while also respecting the right to protest in a safe, sensible, and proportionate way, as we are in this public health emergency. It is important to labour the point that these protests are about injustice. It is right that we come together to find the right way, collectively, to tackle those injustices, fight for social justice, and deliver social justice for black, Asian and minority ethnic communities. As we have seen on our streets, however, by attacking our courageous police a small minority of individuals have acted in a wholly unjust way. The hon. and learned Lady mentioned the events in America, and it is dreadful, utterly heart-wrenching, and sad to see the level of protests there as well. As we saw over the weekend, a small minority of people are subverting the cause that people are protesting about.

We will continue to fight to solve inequalities and injustices. Earlier the hon. and learned Lady mentioned the policy of no recourse to public funds, as well as the Wendy Williams review and report. She also mentioned health inequalities, particularly for black and minority ethnic communities, and it was right for the Government to address that issue in the House last week. We must collectively come together. The Minister for Equalities is looking at this issue right now, and we must find an integral, overall approach across Government, with combined policies, not just one, to look at how we can serve those communities better, and address many of the inequalities that have been brought to light over recent weeks.