The Launch of a Review into Institutional Racism at the Westway Trust goes ahead this evening at Acklam Village/Bay56 from 7pm.
It will be an opportunity to see how anyone can contribute or otherwise support this vital intervention.
Please share widely. Not only news of the event but the ongoing process which will continue for the next few months.
Below is a beautifully written reason why it is such a vital intervention, taken from the 2017 book 'Why I no longer talk to White people about Race' by Reni Eddo-Lodge.
For anyone who observed the performance of Westway Chair Alan Brown at last year's Westway AGM, you may recognise her words in both the denial of my point (as described in my previous post 'Whitey's on the Moon Again') and also the claim that Westway23 Chair, Niles Hailstones, was in "another universe".
It is important to note that that accusation - what amounted to a complete dismissal of Niles' views and experience - came after Niles and others had spent many hours over many months speaking patiently with Alan about the issues faced, in a genuine effort of conciliation.
"I cannot continue to emotionally exhaust myself trying to get this message across, while also toeing a very precarious line that tries not to implicate any one white person in their role of perpetuating structural racism, lest they character-assassinate me.
“So I’m no longer talking to white people about race. I don’t have a huge amount of power to change the way the world works, but I can set boundaries. I can halt the entitlement they feel towards me and I’ll start that by stopping the conversation. The balance is too far swung in their favour. Their intent is often not to listen or learn, but to exert their power, to prove me wrong, to emotionally drain me, and to rebalance the status quo. I’m not talking to white people about race unless I absolutely have to. If there’s something like a media or conference appearance that means that someone might hear what I’m saying and feel less alone, then I’ll participate. But I’m no longer dealing with people who don’t want to hear it, wish to ridicule it and, frankly, don’t deserve it.”
Creative Community Procession
Westway Trust Exposed 2015 AGM
Tutu Foundation Review Launch