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County Council Leader Says: ‘We Realise Black Lives Matter, So We Will Listen And We Will Act’

Published on: 13 Jun, 2020
Updated on: 16 Jun, 2020

Cllr Tim Oliver

The leader of Surrey County Council has come out with a strong statement in the wake of the Black Lives Matter demonstrations admitting that more needs to be done to achieve racial equality in Surrey.

In a statement, Cllr Tim Oliver (Con, Weybridge) said: “The recent scenes in America have been extremely hard to watch. But watch and listen, we must.

“The callous death of George Floyd at the hands of US police was shocking and disturbing.

“But what is abundantly clear is the anger and frustration of the black community across the world is not just about this one tragedy. And, I’m afraid, it is not just about America.

“We have made great strides in the equality agenda in this country, transformative progress has unquestionably been made over the past two decades. But it is important that we recognise racial bias in our country still exists. We still have some way to go.

“We must listen to the experiences of black and other ethnic minority members of our communities. Without giving these communities a voice, without listening, we cannot pretend to know how the lives of BAME people are affected day in day out by racial prejudice, bias and discrimination.

“We recognise more must be done to break down the barriers facing the BAME community, tackle conscious and unconscious bias and empower those who may feel restricted or unheard. Please speak up, we will listen.

“We are challenging ourselves to put equality of opportunity at the forefront of our policies and decision-making. We will test this, we will listen to our minority communities and we will work together to ensure Surrey is a place where everybody can flourish, and that not one single person is discriminated against.”

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