Napo General Secretary Ian Lawrence was among the speakers at the start of the huge #resistracism demonstration in London to celebrate the UN Anti-Racism day on the 18th of March.
Ian started by saying that he was proud to be the first British Asian General Secretary of Napo, the son of an immigrant and of his own South London heritage.
Wearing his Millwall FC colours, Ian referenced the controversial debate that had followed ex-footballer Gary Lineker’s comments about the Government’s policies on Refugees and paid tribute to the work of Millwall FC and other football clubs for their anti-racism work in our communities.
He spoke of his childhood memories of walking the streets of South London alongside his parents when seeking rented accommodation, and seeing signs in windows saying: ‘No Blacks, No Asians, No Jews and No Irish’ and his despair that such attitudes were still prevalent in some parts of the UK today.
Whilst welcoming the societal changes that have occurred in the decades since and evidencing the increase in the numbers of people of colour entering politics ( ‘but still not enough’) Ian drew loud cheers from the audience when saying how ashamed he was that British Asian Politicians such as Priti Patel and Suella Braverman could align themselves with the Racist policies espoused by this government during their term of office.
Finally, he called on the Government to stop wasting taxpayers money on disingenuous schemes to send refugees to Rwanda and instead engage with the UK’s European partners to create humane routes and agreed processes to assist desperate people in their time of need, and urged all those present to continue the campaign to stamp out racism forever.