Racial Equality at the E&C

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Thursday 22 December 2005 10.39am
How on earth the Mayor has come to the conclusion that there is some sort of racial discrimination in the E&C Regeneration Plan I cannot imagine. In my experience (which is quite a lot, I sit on the Diversity Panel of the Elephant Links) this is totally and utterly untrue. In fact the exact reverse is the case. Whether the source is the racial minorities themselves or some misguided do-gooder, this kind of publicity is seditious and ridiculously trouble-stirring. Where on earth did this come from?
Thursday 22 December 2005 12.11pm
As I understand it CRE have carried out an informal investigation and were satisifed there was no need for intervention.

Is this not a case of Ken Livingstone overreacting yet again thus creating a problem and unrest amongst the community.

I would be very interested to know if anyone has any facts or first hand experience of this as we can only go by what we read in the press!
Thursday 22 December 2005 12.31pm
'e just likes to see 'is name in the papers...cant keep 'is bleeding nose out...so says the Oracle...a.k.a. my Mother!
Thursday 22 December 2005 3.42pm
One man's "trouble-stirring" could well be a real case of discrimination couldn't it? All depends on what side of the effects you are sitting on....

Southwark Council seems to have a track record of this sort of thing. There have been several incidents, for example the issues on Peckham of bullying shokeepers, the night club closing which leaves the council most likely having to pay heavy compensation for illegal actions, the concerns on council hiring policies, the concerns about bully of elderly black pensioners, etc. You put those together, and that could in many people's eyes - certainly those of the minority community - be reasonably construed as a pattern.

The Lord Herman Ousley report seemed to find that while Southwark Coucil had adequate policies regarding discirimination, they were not being APPLIED. Which is really what matters - the effects that poeple feel. There were also some pretty damning revelations in there. And by many accounts Ousley was on the soft end of things.

I think one has to be careful here not to go bashing people for raising concerns. I have actually spoken with some of the people concerned and I think there is a real issue here - the effects of these acivitites on them, the degree to which they seem to feel excluded from a voice, and the degree to which they seem to feel they are exculded from a role in the decision-making over things which obviously affect them. It is not mere hysteria. From what I could see, they genuinely feel like they are bing steamrollered.

The council would probably be better if it took this seriously and actually resolved the concerns, rather than resort to knee-jerk bashing these people with murky words such as "sedition"????. I doubt that will make the problem (or the publicity surrounding it) vanish. In fact it will probably only reinforce the beliefs that something is seriously wrong...


jackie rokotnitz Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> How on earth the Mayor has come to the conclusion
> that there is some sort of racial discrimination
> in the E&C Regeneration Plan I cannot
> imagine. In my experience (which is quite a lot, I
> sit on the Diversity Panel of the Elephant Links)
> this is totally and utterly untrue. In fact the
> exact reverse is the case. Whether the source is
> the racial minorities themselves or some misguided
> do-gooder, this kind of publicity is seditious and
> ridiculously trouble-stirring. Where on earth did
> this come from?


Thursday 22 December 2005 3.50pm
Well, the people I know involved in the Reg.Project are of all colours and creeds. Frequently people who complain they are being left out of the loop are people who arent ready tocome forward and be part of the project, only to sit on the sidelines and look for slights. I honestly dont know what has bee going on in Peckham, but I find it odd that there could be discrimination in a place with such a huge Afro-Carribean population. But at the E&C the emphasis on racial diversity is right up there, and I have never seen the slightest sign of it.
Thursday 22 December 2005 3.57pm
CRE should investigate Southwark Council's plans for Elephant and Castle - Ken Livingstone's press release

Biting back in Ken race row - story from Tuesday's SLP with rebuttal from Simon Hughes MP.

Jackie, I dont think you are doing yourself or the Elephant project any favours by referring to "sedition" !
Thursday 22 December 2005 3.58pm
Blimey, there's even a Jewish bloke playing the xylophone in the E&C subway.
Thursday 22 December 2005 4.49pm
Specifically the council's inspectors, who were not minorities (reference aformentioned issue of council hiring pracices), were apparently muscling some minority shopowners out and treating them derisively in an attempt to make them vacate their premises on the cheap. The formal complaint made by said shopkeepers to the southwark council was apparently replied to and dismissed by.....the inspectors in question. You get the picture....

The issue ended up with the Southwark Council having publicy apologize.

If you claim to be involved on a committee involved with this same activity in E&C - organized by the same Southwark Council - one would think that you should know this sort of issue inside and out - and have double vigilance that it doesn't re-occur at E&C. Your shouldn't be be getting informed about it on the SE1 message board by a stranger....

And I think the issue at hand is discriminatrory EFFECTS to minorites, not the council's own perception of its work or the perception of non-minorites. Or putting a friendly dark face on policies that people in the community seem have an intrinisic problem with. Do they have a say - do they have any decision making influence. Or are they being patronized and then decisons made anyway. These are important distinctions...

I think you need to go out to the people and take their concerns seriously, not come here to abuse or demean them. That is a textbook method for making it worse...



jackie rokotnitz Wrote:
I honestly
> dont know what has bee going on in Peckham, but I
> find it odd that there could be discrimination in
> a place with such a huge Afro-Carribean
> population. But at the E&C the emphasis on
> racial diversity is right up there, and I have
> never seen the slightest sign of it.


Thursday 22 December 2005 4.59pm
OK take back sedition, but it's inflamatory and patently unfair and incorrect and gives a totally wrong impression. My last posting seems grammatically garbled, sorry, I mean I have never seen any sign of discrimination in any of my contacts within the E&C Project, as I say, quite the opposite. And it makes my blood boil when people LOOK for racism where there is none. Goodness knows there's enough of it which does exist, to our eternal shame.
Thursday 22 December 2005 5.56pm
Osamede - where can I find information on the bullying of black pensioners? or the hiring policies of Southwark? in all my dealings with Southwark the black or ethnic people seem well represented in staff levels....

Incidentally I would be horrified by bullying full stop, whether child or pensioner of any race.
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