Citizens of the US, the UK and worldwide are becoming increasingly aware of the devastating realities of racial discrimination across the globe. Although this is not a new phenomenon by any means, the brutal murder of George Floyd by a former Minneapolis police officer struck a chord that has forced all citizens, no matter their colour, to reflect on the kinds of societies they are living in.
For many people living in the UK, the idea that racism is still a huge and pervasive problem, is a far removed one; “I’ve never seen it so it must not happen” or “I doubt it happens anymore, not in today’s society” are the kinds of thought processes that one might hold. Particularly in the UK, acts of racism are insidious and often indirect, so it’s really no surprise that people assume it to be a thing of the past.
However, the events over the past two weeks – including George Floyd’s murder and the wealth of people of colour now feeing able to speak out about their own experiences of racial discrimination and violence – has meant that we are forced to look beyond and beneath the surface. Assuming that something is probably not an issue just because it doesn’t affect you is no longer an option. Together we must deconstruct the illusory paintings of liberalism and progression that many assume all British citizens to live within.
How To Help
If you have felt affected by the horrific incidents that have unfolded in the past weeks (and that have been unfolding beneath the surface for generations passed) it’s likely you’re wondering what you can do to help. By no means is it the time to think your actions don’t matter. All struggles throughout history are made up of collective, supportive and determined individuals.
There are several ways you can help to make a difference. There are petitions to sign, including Justice For George Floyd, Hands Up Act and Mandatory Life Sentence For Police Brutality. There are also a host of enlightening books to read, if you want like to educate yourself more deeply on the matters of race, racism, privilege and unconscious bias. As well as this, there are of course charities to support. Following is a list of 10 currently active charities that work to counter and combat the effects of racism in the UK:
10 UK Charities to Support:
The UK’s leading independent race equality think tank. They generate intelligence to challenge race inequality in Britain through research, network building, leading debate, and policy engagement.
A service user/community-oriented agency that provides support and advice to victims of hate, and promotes equality and good relations between people with protected characteristics as defined by law.
One of Britain’s leading social policy think-tanks focusing on issues that affect Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities. Originally set up in 1984, ROTA aims to increase the capacity of BAME organisations and strengthen the voice of BAME communities through increased civic engagement and participation in society.
Works with young people from disadvantaged backgrounds aged 13 to 30 to inspire and enable them to succeed in the career of their choice. They also influence others to create a fairer society in which everyone, regardless of their background, can flourish.
5. Kick It Out
English football’s equality and inclusion organisation. Working throughout the football, educational and community sectors to challenge discrimination, they encourage inclusive practices and campaign for positive change.
An independent UK charity working to create a just, humane and effective penal system. They do this by inquiring into the workings of the system; informing prisoners, staff and the wider public; and by influencing Parliament, government and officials towards reform.
Works towards the principal of equality and creating a fair and just society. They provide support, advice, leadership and an influential voice for people who face discrimination, harassment, hate crime and disadvantage.
Provides educational workshops, training sessions, multimedia packages, and a whole host of other resources, all with the purpose of tackling racism in society. Established in January 1996, the organisation utilises the high-profile status of football and football players to publicise its message.
The only charity providing expertise on state related deaths and their investigation to bereaved people, lawyers, advice and support agencies, the media and parliamentarians. Their specialist casework includes deaths in police and prison custody, immigration detention, mental health settings and deaths involving multi-agency failings or where wider issues of state and corporate accountability are in question.
Hosts the independent partner Black Thrive: A partnership between communities, statutory organisations, voluntary and private sector. They work together to reduce the inequality and injustices experienced by Black people in mental health services.
For more charities to support, use our search engine to search for charities by type, cause, area, outreach, and much more.