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Race and ethnicity
The Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful to discrimination against a person on the basis of their race. The protected characteristic of race refers to a group of people defined by their race, colour, and nationality (including citizenship) ethnic or national origins.
The Council is committed to promoting race equality and valuing the contribution made by citizens of all races. For more information on race in Hackney, see the Hackney profile.
Examples of race discrimination
The following information provides an illustration of how some groups can find themselves disadvantaged as a result of their race:
- adults from a mixed background are at a higher risk of being a victim of personal crime than other ethnic groups – all black and minority ethnic groups are at a higher risk than the white group, according to a report from the Department for Justice in 2013
- applicants with white-sounding names are almost twice as likely to be successful in job applications than those with black-sounding names, according to research published by the Department for Work and Pensions in 2009
- some ethnic groups tend to experience higher levels of worklessness than others – according to the 2011 Census, in Hackney 61% of all working-age adults were in work, including 69% of white people, 58% of people of mixed heritage, 50% of people from black backgrounds, 50% people from Asian backgrounds and 39% of people from Gypsy and Traveller communities
- black and ethnic minority communities are under represented in Parliament – 8% of MPs are non-white and 14% of the population of England and Wales are non-white
Understanding vulnerable migrants
In the spring we carried out a review of how vulnerable migrants in Hackney access our services. The aim of the research was to find out what stops people from using the services, what impact this has on them and how our approach and external agencies’ approaches could be adapted to overcome those barriers and ensure we meet the needs of vulnerable migrants.
The report outlines a number of recommendations relating to signposting and outreach, training needs for staff, addressing language and ICT needs, strengthening the relationship between the local authority and voluntary community sector to meet migrants’ needs and a number of service specific areas such as increasing access to free childcare, greater pro-activity in intervening early and placing more emphasis on ‘hearing the migrant voice’.
We successfully secured funding from the Department for Communities and Local Government to explore many of the issues raised in the research further in a one year integrated communities programme.
Further information and support
- Hackney Council for Voluntary Services supports all voluntary and community groups in Hackney including many which support specific ethnic groups
- Interlink Foundation brings together members of the Orthodox Jewish community in Hackney and organisations supporting them
- to find out about other organisations and services promoting race equality in Hackney, visit the Hackney Directory or for health and social care related services, see Hackney iCare
- briefing paper on race, ethnic identity and religion
- equality and diversity good practice guide – ethnic minority communities, European Social Fund
- race equality terminology toolkit
- No Longer Invisible profiles the Latin American community in London and sets out a wide range of recommendations for meeting its social, economic and cultural needs.