The Mirror – UK ‘best place in West to live for ethnic minorities’, shows Windrush 75 poll

UK ‘best place in West to live for ethnic minorities’, shows Windrush 75 poll

A study to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Empire Windrush docking at Tilbury shows Britain has come a long way – but there is still more to do.

Britain is a better place to live as an ethnic minority than any other major Western democracy – but many black and Asian people still face everyday discrimination, a report suggests today.

The British Future think tank wanted to paint a “state of the nation” picture of public attitudes on race, identity and prejudice, to mark this month’s 75th anniversary of the HMT Empire Windrush’s docking at Tilbury.

According to its polling, 67% of ethnic minority respondents said black and Asian people face discrimination in their everyday lives in Britain.

But asked whether Britain is a better or worse place for people from an ethnic minority background to live compared with other major western democracies like the US, Germany and France, 80% of ethnic minority respondents said it is better.

British Future director Sunder Katwala said: “The Windrush 75th anniversary is an important moment to honour the pioneers of this history.

Immigrants from the Caribbean were welcomed onto the Essex dockside

Immigrants from the Caribbean were welcomed onto the Essex dockside (



“It should now be seized as a chance to imagine our future too. Britain has changed for the better in these 75 years but we must also focus on the progress we still need to see on race.

“Committing now to an ambitious agenda for change in the quarter-century to come would be a fitting legacy.”

The findings come in the think tank’s Why the Windrush Matters Today report, drawing on polling by Focaldata and a series of discussion groups.

Eighty percent of people from ethnic minorities and 66% of the public as a whole agree the “UK needs to make much more progress on racial equality in the next 25 years”.

The figure rose to 87% among black people.

Windrush 75 convenor Patrick Vernon said: “The Windrush is black history and it is British history, the story of how our society came to look as it does today and why we all have a stake in it.

“It is something that all of our children should learn about at school and something that all of us can celebrate.

Professor Patrick Vernon is convenor of Windrush 75

Professor Patrick Vernon is convenor of Windrush 75

“It is also history that we must take care not to lose as the Windrush generation sadly passes away.”

Earlier this year, the Government was criticised over its compensation scheme for victims of the Windrush scandal.

The scheme was set up after it emerged in 2017 that black British citizens from the Caribbean, who had been invited to the UK to help rebuild the country after the Second World War, were wrongly deported or detained.

Ministers were later blasted for dropping three of the 30 recommendations made in a review by Wendy Williams, over setting up a migrants’ commissioner; boosting powers of the independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration; and to hold reconciliation events.

The Home Office has previously said it was “committed to righting the wrongs of Windrush”, having paid or offered just over £72.5million in compensation by the end of April this year.

Focaldata quizzed 1,000 “nationally representative” people in March and April, 1,000 people from an “ethnic minority sample” and a “boosted sample of 300 black Caribbean respondents”.

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