Alliance for Cohesion for Racial Equality (ACRE), Reading Refugee Support Group (RRSG) and Reading City of Sanctuary (RCoS) are today standing side by side to support Justice for Black Lives and to stand by the family and friends of George Floyd. We also stand with families everywhere grieving for loved ones who lost their lives soon after coming into contact with the police.
In 2000, ACRE (previously known as the Reading Council for Racial Equality) led the formation of the ‘Reading Declaration’ supporting the drive to eradicate institutional racism highlighted by the murder of Stephen Lawrence. The Declaration was again adopted 11 January 2007 to include voluntary sector partners. It stated:
We, in Reading, are proud of our multi-racial and diverse cultural heritage, which we regard as a source of cultural, social, and economic strength. We will work vigorously to combat all forms of racism, to rid Reading of racial discrimination and to enshrine the principle that the indivisibility and universality of human rights are the foundations of justice and peace.
ACRE, in partnership with and supported by RRSG and RCoS, propose that in light of recent events that led to the death of George Floyd:
- We want to be part of a community that stands shoulder to shoulder with worldwide reaction against discrimination and racism;
- We want to ensure we remember and continue to honour Stephen Lawrence’s legacy;
- We want those in positions of leadership and authority to stand up and challenge those in authority that incite racism, directly or indirectly through their actions and words, or their lack of actions and words.
ACRE is leading the call for original signatories to the Reading Declaration to not only reaffirm their commitment to justice and to peace through ending racial discrimination, but to take immediate, demonstrable and publicised action in response to the absolute demand from the black community for equality and representation throughout society; from the classroom to doctors’ surgeries, from corporate boardrooms to university lecture halls, from parish councils to local, regional and national government.
We propose to extend the impact of the Declaration from Reading into a Berkshire-wide declaration and will be inviting all Berkshire Local Authorities to add their commitment, support and action.
Further details and contacts
Alliance for Cohesion and Racial Equality
We promote equality, diversity and community cohesion. We are here to serve our many clients and communities.
Reading Refugee Support Group
We provide advice and support for refugees and asylum seekers.
Reading City of Sanctuary
We are building a network of businesses, organisations and individuals who by working together will help to build a culture of hospitality and welcome throughout Reading.