A very positive development as KREC grapples with how we go forward and be impactive at this troubling time is the news that the Royal Borough of Kingston Lib Dem Administration has submitted a motion on Black Lives Matter to be debated at the next Full Council meeting on Tuesday 7th July 2020: I have copied the link below from the Council website and below it is the motion. No one can contribute to the Full Council debate due to Standing Orders – (the general public cannot participate in the debate, only elected Councillors can):
In accordance with Procedure Rule 8(A)(5), the Council will debate a motion which has been submitted by Members of the Council.
This alternates, from meeting to meeting, between a motion submitted on behalf of the Administration and a motion submitted on behalf of Opposition Members of the Council.
The following Motion has been received from the Administration (the Liberal Democrat Group):
Proposed by Councillor Thay Thayalan
Seconded by Councillor Caroline Kerr
‘Liberal Democrat Administration Motion: Black Lives Matter’
‘This Council notes:
- the understandable rage following police brutality that has led to many unnecessary deaths across the United States of America and the world – we support the Black Lives Matter Campaign;
- the depth of public concern expressed over the last few weeks about ingrained, systemic racial profiling and racism that exists against BAME, especially black, people in Britain; and
- the Black Lives Matter flag has been raised over Kingston Council’s Guildhall building, signalling the council’s commitment to celebrating the diversity of the borough, and continue to learn more about how to help end racism and injustice.’
‘This Council believes:
- we are all equal, regardless of skin colour, culture or faith and that we should call out discrimination and racism. Racism or discrimination of any kind has no place in society. We are proud of being a community where diversity is valued and celebrated. We recognise there is a distance to go to have equal opportunities for all.’
‘This Council will:
- lobby the Government for immediate action to implement the recommendations in the report on the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on BAME people; lobby the Government to review the school curriculum, including teaching children about diversity and inclusion from a young age;
- give our support to the Black Lives Matter campaign and continue to celebrate our diversity, listen to our communities and work with minority groups to make space for conversations and thinking to take place that can shape our borough going forward;
- work with our local police force to ensure that stop and search incidents are not based on racial characteristics. At the moment black people are advised to allow the police to continue with their search with specific guidelines on how to behave so as not to antagonise officers such as maintaining eye contact and allowing clothing to be removed;
- work with BAME staff across the council and through the BAME staff network to actively listen to them about their experiences and start shaping ideas on what needs to change and improve. Our workforce is becoming increasingly diverse and we will continue to examine our HR policies and workplace values to ensure they enable us to attract staff that reflect the borough’s diverse communities; and
- work with our local communities and organisations to review the appropriateness of existing artefacts (statues, plaques, street signs etc.) on public land in the 21st century.’
The link at the top of this email allows you to watch the debate on YouTube and I would encourage members to try and watch the debate if they can. It might tell us something about the current state of mind of various Councillors and RBK’s commitment to Race Equality..