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Government Race Report disregards institutional racism and Windrush Scandal - please take action

Dear Supporters

It has been a while since I have been in touch with you.

I wanted to make you aware of a campaign which relates to the impacts of the hostile environment and the Windrush Scandal.

On 31st of March the Government published its report of the Commission on Race and Disparities:

The Commission was established in response to the Black Lives Matter protests which took place in the summer of 2020.

The report has been met with outrage, astonishment and anger by black communities and those who campaign against injustice and racism with public statements, petitions and letters from community groups, campaigners, lawyers, researchers, historians and more rejecting the report and calling for its withdrawal as well as more and more of those who were listed as consultants declaring publicly that they played no such part.

I have set out some of my key concerns about the report here:

This includes the failure to acknowledge that institutional racism exists and the gaslighting of people with a lived experience of racism, suggesting racism is all in the past or in our minds.

A major omission and concern regarding the report is that outrageously it barely makes mention of the Windrush Scandal and ‘hostile environment’, in fact it says that those impacted felt ‘let down’ astonishingly.

How stripping people of their homes, tearing from their families, imprisoning them in detention centres, deporting them and exiling them and destroying their lives can be described as ‘let down’ is beyond me and most likely you too.

If anything demonstrates the institutional racism which exists in the UK in such a stark, horrific way it is the Windrush Scandal and ongoing targeting of the descendants of the Windrush Generation.

It also seeks to glorify the enslavement of African people / Transatlantic Slave Trade stating that; ‘There is a new story about the Caribbean experience which speaks to the slave period not only being about profit and suffering but how culturally African people transformed themselves into a re-modelled African /Britain.’

That the torture, enslavement, and murder of millions of African people can be reframed as an opportunity is shocking.

But it is the legacies of enslavement and colonialism which allow the institutional racism which led to the Windrush Scandal, hostile environment, and mass deportations to exist.

Together with some of the people who are directly impacted by the Windrush Scandal plus organisations and individuals who have supported their campaign for justice, representing thousands of people collectively, we sent a letter, initiated by Jacqueline McKenzie to the report’s author last week.

You can read it here:

It was also reported on in The Independent here:

If you would like to join the call to reject the race report here are a couple of actions you can join:

1. I have signed with over 2000 others a letter to the Prime Minister initiated by the Runnymede Trust. This has been submitted but is still open to sign here:

2. I would also invite you to sign the petition, by Operation Black Vote, which I have also signed calling for the report to be denounced here:

Hashtags that are being used in relation to the campaign are #rejectracereport #rejectthereport #racereport

Our lived experiences of racism are valid, the institutional and systemic racism we experience including the Windrush Scandal and targeting of their children and grandchildren for deportation, tearing families apart exists and cannot be disregarded.

The recommendations of the Windrush Lessons Learned report along with the recommendations from an array of other investigations and reports into racism in the UK need to be implemented.

If lessons are not learned, history repeats and that is what all of us campaigning against racism, seek to prevent, that and a future where the generations that come after us do not have to continue to campaign against racism.

Thank you for taking the time to read this update and for your support, I felt it important to make those of you who have supported our campaigning against deportations aware of the impact of the race report in playing down the historic and recent events that have led to the injustice faced by Black communities in the UK today.

I was reminded over the past few days as events unfolded of this proverb: "Until the lion has its own historian, tales of the hunt will always glorify the hunter."

Kind Regards


Zita Holbourne

National Chair BARAC UK

BAME Lawyers for Justice

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