Race Disparity Audit - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:32 pm on 10th October 2017.

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Photo of Baroness Benjamin Baroness Benjamin Liberal Democrat 3:32 pm, 10th October 2017

My Lords, I welcome this report because it focuses on an issue that affects the whole of society, even more so than when I came here from Trinidad as a 10 year-old in 1960. I was born in Trinidad so I knew that I was worthy and I knew about my history, but a lot of young black and Asian minority children do not know about their history. It is Black History Month so I have visited schools, universities and prisons. Just this morning I visited a school in Bedfordshire to talk about Black History Month. When I visited prisons, I realised just how much black men did not know about their history and how they felt let down by the education system not focusing on who they are. To move forward you need to know where you have been and where you have come from. What are the Government doing to create a safety net and ensure that BAME children do not fall through it? We need a safety net to help and protect them and show them that they belong. We owe it to them and we owe it to our young people—not just black people but white people too—to teach them about black history and how we can all move forward to make our country, Great Britain, great again.