Runnymede

We're Hiring!

Vacancies: Research Assistants

1. A full time (35 hours/wk) Research Assistant with survey and literature review experience

2. A part time (21 hours/wk) Research Assistant with education policy experience

Read more about the roles, both to start on 11 August.

Caring and Earning
This research looks at the experiences and preferences of low-income Caribbean, Pakistani and Somali people in balancing work and care responsibilities. It examines the particular challenges faced by these ethnic minority groups, and the challenges for employers and policy. Read more here
Making Histories

Migration is part of the UK's history. Let's celebrate it!

This learning resource looks at migration, history and cultural identity and is designed for all children and young people.

The fun-to-use videos, audio recordings and interactive timeline will bring discussions about migration history to life, encouraging students to think about their own families’ journeys.

Visit the website

Romans Revealed

In partnership with the University of Reading, Runnymede has launched a new website called Romans Revealed, which looks at just how diverse Roman Britain was.

Find out more here

Black and minority ethnic young people are often told to pursue education and training to improve their job prospects. Since the 1990s BME people have had higher participation rates in higher education, but their worse labour market outcomes are sometimes explained by the kind of university they attend. However, in this briefing, we find that even BME graduates at elite institutions have worse employment outcomes than their white peers, suggesting that good qualifications don't overcome discrimination in the labour market, and throwing into question the policy focus on social mobility. Read more
New Muslims

Muslims are not all stereotypes!

Runnymede has launched 'The New Muslims'. The report examines the wide range of Muslim identities in the UK through looking at a number of factors, including changing demographics, Muslims in the army, Muslims in the media and youth culture. This failure to understand diversity among Muslims leads to ill-thought out government policy

Learn more about the the report here.

Runnymede

Posted by Vicki 10 July 2012 : BME , racism , far-right , education ,

Today's blog post is written by Runnymede's Research and Policy Analyst Phil Mawhinney

Racism is very much alive in sport, despite it being one of the few remaining public spaces for anti-racism, and new forms of racism are emerging. So said Professor Ben Carrington at a Europe House discussion on racism in sport held last week, in partnership with Runnymede. So, is the debate actually progressing and how can we move forward?

Even football-phobes cannot have failed to notice the recent Euro 2012 tournament (won, predictably, by the pre-eminent Spanish side), and the many programmes and articles highlighting the racist abuse of players by fans. Add this to the recent high-profile cases of (alleged) abuse by players on other players – such as Luis Suarez being banned for abusing Patrice Evra, and John Terry being stripped of the England captaincy while under investigation for abusing Anton Ferdinand – and you can see why racism in sport has been so widely-discussed of late.

Former footballers Paul Elliot CBE and Paul Mortimer spoke at the event, giving affecting accounts of the abuse they received, including from their own fans and teammates. Many see footballers as huge egos, grossly overpaid for playing a kids’ game. Paul Elliot helpfully emphasized that the football pitch is the footballer’s workplace and everybody has the right to work in a place free from discrimination. Racism in sport is about rights.

Posted by phil 10 July 2012 : employment , Europe , human rights , Runnymede , far-right , racism , BME ,

Racism is very much alive in sport, despite it being one of the few remaining public spaces for anti-racism, and new forms of racism are emerging. So said Professor Ben Carrington at a Europe House discussion on racism in sport held last week, in partnership with Runnymede. So, is the debate actually progressing and how can we move forward?

Even football-phobes cannot have failed to notice the recent Euro 2012 tournament (won, predictably, by the pre-eminent Spanish side), and the many programmes and articles highlighting the racist abuse of players by fans. Add this to the recent high-profile cases of (alleged) abuse by players on other players – such as Luis Suarez being banned for abusing Patrice Evra, and John Terry being stripped of the England captaincy while under investigation for abusing Anton Ferdinand – and you can see why racism in sport has been so widely-discussed of late.

Former footballers Paul Elliot CBE and Paul Mortimer spoke at the event, giving affecting accounts of the abuse they received, including from their own fans and teammates. Many see footballers as huge egos, grossly overpaid for playing a kids’ game. Paul Elliot helpfully emphasized that the football pitch is the footballer’s workplace and everybody has the right to work in a place free from discrimination. Racism in sport is about rights.

Posted by klara 17 May 2012 : employment , austerity , Europe , far-right , BME ,

Today's blog post is written by Klara Schmitz, a research and policy analyst at Runnymede. This piece also appears on the website of the UK Race and Europe Network (UKREN).

Greek left-wing leader Alexis Tsipras has today accused European leaders of “playing poker with European people’s lives”, by insisting on austerity measures, whilst David Cameron is due to tell French President François Hollande that austerity is working and “we are moving in the right direction”, when they meet tomorrow. Austerity has been the main prescription across Europe for dealing with the continent's nearly three-year-old debt crisis, but what impact is it having on ethnic minorities and anti-racism work across the EU?

Back in 2010 Amnesty International’s Annual Report demonstrated that the economic downturn had led to a rise in racism and xenophobia in public discourse in Europe.  Earlier in May, the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), published their Annual Report claiming that the economic crisis was fuelling the rise of racism and intolerance in Europe. It said that the lack of economic opportunities and welfare cuts are pushing ethnic minorities into poverty, and feeding negative attitudes towards immigrants.

ECRI has recently reiterated its concerns about the persistence of racist violence across Europe, and the economic crisis is often seen to be fuelling fears among the general public that can lead to racist attacks on ethnic minorities and migrants. There has been a dramatic increase in the number of racist attacks in many countries, including Italy, Malta and Greece.

Posted by Vicki 20 March 2012 : racism , far-right , criminal justice , representation , Runnymede ,

Today's blog post is written by Vastiana Belfon, a research associate at Runnymede

Researching the Runnymede archives for our new website “The Struggle for Racial Equality – An Oral History of the Runnymede Trust, 1968-1988” showed just how much has changed and, equally important, how much history will repeat itself – unless we take steps to make radical changes.

The language of race has certainly changed - witness recent media coverage of the use of the word 'coloured'. There's still a sense of unease when you read in 1969 of 'immigrant schoolchildren' with IQs that 'work out below their English contemporaries'. In 1971, Conservative MP Gerald Nabarro, addressed the Malvern Conservative Ladies' Tea Club, saying, 'We have enough black men in this country. I call a chair a chair. I mean black men, not immigrants. I don't mind Australians and South Africans or any other white immigrants, but I do object to more impoverished black men, Indians and Pakistanis, coming in.' It is unimaginable that today an MP would confidently say such things in public without fear of recrimination.

In our schools, black parents in the 1970s expressed their concerns about their children being labelled as 'educationally subnormal' or 'remedial'. By 1985, the Swann Report on Multiracial Education was arguing that the problem facing the education system was not how to educate ethnic minority children, but how to educate all children for life in a multiracial and multicultural society. Today, parental worries might focus on exclusions, bullying or school choice.

Posted by Vicki 16 February 2012 : Europe , far-right , racism ,

Today's blog post is written by Klara Schmitz, research and policy analyst at the Runnymede Trust

In the past few months several developments have reignited concerns about the prevalence of racist murders and the role of the far-right across Europe. 

Firstly, the passing of Holocaust Remembrance Day and the six month mark since attacks in Norway at the hands of far-right sympathiser Anders Breivik, have both renewed calls to tackle right-wing extremism in Europe. 

Secondly, some influential figures have recently highlighted the urgent need to combat racism, both in the UK and across the continent. In the wake of the convictions for the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence, mother of the victim Doreen Lawrence has called for the UK government to do more to tackle racism in the UK. In addition, Europe’s human rights commissioner Thomas Hammarberg recently stated in a speech to the Council of Europe that not enough political leaders in Europe are taking a stand against racism and xenophobia in their countries.

Posted by Vicki 10 February 2012 : muslims , election , far-right , Europe ,

Today's blog post was written by Runnymede's deputy director Sarah Isal

Any general election or presidential campaign is interesting for many reasons, not least the fact that this is the time when different parties and candidates lay out their plans, vision and aspirations and put forward their case for being elected. The upcoming French presidential election campaign is particularly important to keep an eye on from the perspective of race equality and immigrants’ rights. 

This is partly because ever since 2002, when Jean Marie Le Pen, then leader of the extreme right party Front National made it into the second round of the election at the expense of socialist Lionel Jospin, French politicians, especially on the right, know all too well that they need to capture his electorate to win the election. In order to do so, they have to make sure that certain themes are central to the campaign, namely immigration, law and order and of course more recently Islam and Muslims.

Posted by Vicki 13 January 2012 : criminal justice , far-right , racism ,

Today’s post is written by Dr Robin Oakley, a Runnymede Fellow

The successful prosecution of two men for the murder of Stephen Lawrence in 1993 may at last provide some closure for members of the Lawrence family.  However this should not be allowed to justify – as some seem to be arguing – any relaxation of efforts to eliminate racism, whether in its overt forms such as racist violence, or in the more subtle institutional forms identified by the Lawrence Inquiry. 

As regards racist violence, it is also important that continuing to focus on the task of bringing perpetrators to justice should not be allowed to divert attention from the need to address also the issue of prevention.  Nearly 20 years after Stephen’s death, the reality is that racist violence continues to take place extensively across the country, as both official statistics and several recent serious incidents demonstrate.  And the great majority of these incidents are still perpetrated by young people – and in particular by young men, as in the case of Stephen’s murder.

Posted by Rob 10 February 2011 : anti-terrorism , human rights , Runnymede , criminal justice , far-right , BME ,

This post was also published on Left Foot Forward

So we’re back to what is becoming an old chestnut; as the latest senior politician condemns multiculturalism. On Saturday, David Cameron took his place, behind Tony Blair, Jack Straw and Trevor Phillips, arguing that “state multiculturalism” has encouraged “different cultures to live separate lives” with a particular Cameron twist – that the UK needs a stronger national identity to prevent people turning to extremism. Surely, such a panoply of senior politicians should have been able to organize the end of so-called state multiculturalism by now – unless of course it never existed in the first place, they do not really mean it, or the alternatives are simply too unattractive to countenance.

A key problem in debates around multiculturalism is that the term means different things to different people. Some believe that multiculturalism actively promotes separate religious and ethnic identities at the expense of common values, whilst others believe that it simply means the existence and recognition of different identities in a shared political space within a framework of human rights. Runnymede’s understanding of the term has always been the latter.

Posted by Vicki 18 November 2010 : far-right , Conservative ,

Today's blog post is written by our public affairs intern Ashley Burton-Lynch

In education oral questions this week, Education Secretary Michael Gove stated that he would “do everything in his power…to ensure that racist [teachers and governors] cannot poison the minds of young people”. Gove made the comment in response to a question from Linda Riordan, Labour MP for Halifax, who called on the Secretary of State for Education to condemn the presence of the BNP in “any school governing body”.

Gove added that the Government is currently looking at how to prevent BNP members from populating governing bodies, and added that they would also look to extend this to teaching. Criticising the previous government, Gove stated that whilst Labour decided the current legislative framework was “sufficient” in preventing BNP members teaching in the classroom, the coalition “do not take that view”.

Posted by Vicki 12 August 2010 : far-right ,

Today's post is written by Runnymede's public affairs intern Gordon Nelson

A delegation of politicians, religious leaders and campaigners are in London today to ask the government to ban a planned demonstration by the fair-right EDL. As reported in the Guardian newspaper yesterday, the EDL is planning to descend on Bradford over the August bank holiday weekend with between 5,000 and 10,000 supporters.

The delegation will present a petition signed by 10,000 Bradford residents to Home Office officials calling on the police and government to ban the demonstration. They argue that the EDL is attempting to provoke trouble in a city that is still recovering from riots in 2001 that followed an attempted march by the National Front, another far right organization.

West Yorkshire police will make a decision next week on whether the EDL demonstration should go ahead. Theresa May will then make the final decision on whether the march should be banned or not. Bradford West MP Marsha Singh added that ‘The Conservative government was elected on a policy of localism, of giving people a greater say in the running of their community. Now is the time to see if they mean it.’     

Posted by Vicki 21 April 2010 : election , asylum , racism , far-right , Runnymede ,

Following the ippr’s findings that immigration does not increase BNP support, the Guardian has published a letter today calling for the three main political parties to publicly declare that racism has no place in politics.

Signed by 17 high profile activists – including Runnymede’s director Rob Berkeley, journalist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown and Operation Black Vote director Simon Woolley – the letter argues that due to closely fought nature of this election, there will be the temptation to make concessions to placate supposed racist voters. In addition, the letter adds that whilst the three main political parties all oppose racism, it “is not enough”.

Highlighting that some sections of the media are “unrestrained in their anti-immigrant and anti-asylum-seeker rhetoric”, the letter argues that we are drifting towards the normalisation of racist discourse. Its adds that “those who would like to promote racist policies towards asylum seekers…have learned to disguise their views in emollient and euphemistic words”.

Latest News

Runnymede is hiring two fixed-term Research Assistants, one full-time and one part-time, to start on 11 August. Further details: Research Assistants
Runnymede's address as of 1 July is: Room BEL1-11, London Metropolitan University, 166-220 Holloway Road, London N7 8DB.

The Runnymede Trust, the UK's leading independent race equality think tank, is to re-focus on research based interventions in social policy and practice.