Church leaders organising racial justice protest
Church leaders from the region are set to take part in a protest in London's Parliament Square in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Those helping to organise the inter-denominational Gathering for Racial Justice event is the Rev David Ellis the regional minister for Baptist churches in Staffordshire and north Birmingham.
The organisers are calling on Christian leaders to support the effort featuring speeches and prayers and which is being backed by numerous bodies including the Church of England, Methodists, Pentecostals, and black majority congregations.
In a joint Facebook post the organisers said: "It was felt that if we did not respond our young people would ask us the question 'where was the church and its leaders when we were prepared to lay down our lives in protest, while we marched for racial justice?'"
"We need to be visible and vocal, and so we are planning to gather in London for a demonstration in Parliament Square, either going into the House of Commons or going to Downing Street. The purpose is to stand in solidarity with our young people for racial equality and justice
"We intend to call for the Government to implement the over 200 recommendations from successive Government enquires. We want to challenge the Government to uphold, fulfil and enforce its legal obligation around the Race Relations Act and subsequent Equality Act (2010).
"We want to challenge the Government to end the disproportionate numbers of black and minority ethnic (BAME) being discriminated against by the police, courts and being held in prison
"This would all be under-girded with prayer, theological reflection and sociological research.
"We would be honoured and privileged if you and your denomination would join us and other church movements on this united church initiative for justice at this Kairos moment in sympathy with our kids and in response to our Father's call that we seek justice.
"The plan is to gather outside Parliament on July 3 at midday to protest and make our demands.
"We are aware of Covid 19 and it with deep anguish and regret that we take this step realising the dangers.
"But tt was felt that so many black lives and dreams have been snuffed out over decades that we could do nothing else but stand up and protest and join the millennials and gen Z in saying racial justice must be implemented now."
A report by Tottenham MP David Lammy found that blacks were nine times more likely to be stopped and searched by the police than whites; three times more likely to be arrested; five times more likely to face force when being arrested; and were disproportionately represented in the prison population at 25 per cent. Of those half were in young offenders institutions. BAME communities make up just 14 per cent of the UK population.
More details are online via https://www.facebook.com/events/2595829900656849/
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