Race issues are as relevant today as when the first laws came into being in 1976 to offer protection from racial discrimination.
As the UK’s minority ethnic population grows it is important that race equality policies are reviewed to include new and emerging communities whilst supporting established minority ethnic groups. The United Kingdom has become a much more ethnically-diverse country over recent decades with 8% of the total population belonging to minority ethnic communities.
Whilst some ethnic minority groups have and continue to do well for themselves, contributing to the economy and society in general there are many more who despite progress do not. The experiences of different ethnic minority groups now vary very widely. For some the most important barriers to achievement are poor schooling and other institutional issues that offer a gateway to opportunity.
The Race Relations Amendment Act (2000), following the inquiry into the death of black teenager Stephen Lawrence gave a general duty to all public authorities to have due regard to the need to promote race equality and ensure that they consult with representatives from minority ethnic communities and to take account of policies on minority ethnic groups.