Calendar of Racism and Resistance ( 19 March – 2 April 2024)

Calendar of Racism and Resistance ( 19 March – 2 April 2024)


Written by: IRR News Team


As anti-migrant, anti-equalities, anti-abortion, misogynistic and anti-LGBTQI rhetoric in electoral campaigning are increasingly interlinked, we reflect this in the coverage below which also includes information on the influence of the Christian Right as well as the religious Right generally.

22 March: A transparency document reveals that a private jet costing £165,000 was chartered to fly home secretary James Cleverly to Rwanda for a day trip in December, to sign another agreement with Rwanda setting up an appeal process for asylum seekers. (Guardian, 22 March 2024)

26 March: Mayors in France object to a policy decision that they say aims to clear homeless migrants from the capital in the run-up to the Paris Olympics by bussing them out to rural and small town areas without consultation. (Le Monde, 26 March 2024)

27 March: The French prime minister, warning of ‘breaches of secularism’ and ‘Islamist entryism’, announces legal action against a vocational student at the Lycée Maurice-Ravel in Paris who claimed her principal hit her as he asked her to take off her veil. The accused principal resigns, citing death threats. (Guardian, 27 March 2024)

27 March: In the run-up to the London mayoral elections, it is revealed that a Conservative video attacking Sadiq Khan’s record on fighting crime was made by Conservative campaign headquarters, not its mayoral candidate Susan Hall. (Guardian, 27 March 2024)

28 March: London Elects, which administers mayoral and London Assembly elections, says that Laurence Fox, leader of the Reclaim party, will not be a candidate for mayor as he failed to fill in the nomination forms correctly. Fox attributes the decision to ‘political corruption’. (Guardian, 28 March 2024)

29 March: Italian deputy prime minister Matteo Salvini says there should be a 20 percent cap on the number of foreign pupils in schools while also calling for an end to ‘do-goodery’ and increased respect for teachers and ‘our culture’. (ANSA, 29 March 2024)

30 March: Former immigration minister Robert Jenrick claims that the alleged reporting of 30 charities to police in connection with ‘the conflict between Israel and Hamas’ is evidence of a ‘shameful new high-water mark of anti-Jewish and anti-British sentiment’. (Telegraph, 30 March 2024)

30 March: Labour BME MPs and members of the parliamentary Labour party criticise the prominence of the union flag on election material as potentially alienating to ethnic minority voters who associate such symbols with the extreme Right. (Guardian, 30 March 2024)

1 April: As the Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act 2021 comes into force, the general secretary of the Scottish police federation says it will reduce trust in policing, while the Scottish Union for Education, which opposes trans rights and race equality in the curriculum, leads a demonstration outside Holyrood. (Guardian, 1 April 2024)


With anti-migrant, anti-Muslim, anti-equalities, anti-abortion, misogynistic and anti-LGBTQI activities increasingly interlinking, we now incorporate information on the Christian Right as well as the religious Right generally. 

24 March: In Athens, Greece, Golden Dawn’s youth group is linked to an attack, preceded by online threats, on the offices of Colour Youth, where homophobic slogans and swastikas were daubed at the entrance. (News 247, 26 March 2024)


21 March: Greater Manchester police are accused of stifling legitimate protest after Masa Khawaja, a woman of Palestinian heritage, is arrested for chanting ‘from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free’, held for 13 hours and subjected to bail conditions banning her from Manchester city centre or being in a group of more than three people. (Guardian, 21 March 2024) 

21 March: The IOPC announces misconduct charges against two serving and one former police officer in Gwent, Wales for racist, misogynist and homophobic WhatsApp messages. (Sky News, 21 March 2024)

21 March: Justice for the Bristol Protesters, Bristol SolFed, Netpol and others protest outside Bridewell police station, Bristol to call for Avon and Somerset police to be held accountable, on the third anniversary of the ‘Kill the Bill’ protest, as a result of which 42 people were jailed for a combined total of 112 years.  (ITV, 21 March 2024)

25 March: The Judicial Conduct panel finds Recorder Simon Myerson KC guilty of misconduct for offensive tweets to transgender and pro-Palestinian activists, and issues him with formal advice. (Squawkbox, 25 March 2024)

29 March: Left-wing parties and anti-racist groups demand an enquiry after a video of extreme police brutality against two Black men in Lavapiés, Spain, goes viral. Guardian, 1 April 2024)

30 March: In Nienburg, Germany, Lamin Touray, a 46-year-old migrant from Gambia, is shot dead by police. Officers claim they were called out after Touray threatened his girlfriend with a knife and that he did not comply with orders, resulting in serious injuries to a police officer and service dog. (Gambia Journal, 31 March 2024)


22 March: The March 30 Movement files the latest of 17 complaints in the Netherlands and at the International Criminal Court against Israeli soldiers with dual Dutch-Israeli nationality accused of taking part in the ‘Gaza genocide’. A case is also filed at the ICC against French-Israeli soldier Yoel Ohnona. (Middle East Monitor, 25 March 2024)


21 March: Department for Education data reveal that school absence figures remain significantly higher than pre-pandemic levels. More than one in three pupils in receipt of free school meals were persistently absent in 2022-23. (TES, 21 March 2024)

25 March: No More Exclusions launches a resource to support all those who want to discuss their rights and Palestinian liberation in education. (No More Exclusions, 25 March 2024) 

25 March: A report by the government’s ‘Social Cohesion Adviser’, Sara Khan, suggests placing limits on protests outside schools, forming a ‘Cohesion and Conflict Unit’ and collecting data on ‘cohesion indicators’ such as ethnicity. Khan also says that schools in England are fuelling ‘anger, hate and polarisation’ by shutting down legitimate debate on Israel-Gaza. (Khan Review, 25 March 2024; Guardian, 29 March 2024)

27 March: A report by Hong Kong Watch draws attention to the problems faced by holders of British National Overseas visas, who are forced to pay international tuition fees and are not eligible for student finance in British higher education. (EIN, 27 March 2024)

28 March: Data shows that although the number of Black academics working in UK universities has increased by 40 percent in two years, the number quitting to work in the private sector has tripled. (THE, 28 March 2024)

29 March: In response to the Lycée Maurice-Ravel incident and the involvement of radicalised pupils in the killing of two teachers, the French education minister announces the formation of a mobile security force for schools experiencing difficulties. (BBC News, 29 March 2024)

30 March: Education secretary Gillian Keegan attacks the ‘divisive ideology’ of the teachers’ union NEU, following a conference motion calling the Israeli government ‘racist’ and ‘guilty of apartheid policies’. (Guardian, 30 March 2024)

31 March: As a survey reports that 4,000 more special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) pupils are enrolled than national capacity, the founder of Black SEN Mamas warms that black children who are autistic or have ADHD are facing greater barriers than others when it comes to accessing care plans. (TES, 21 March 2024; Guardian, 31 March 2024)

2 April: Green MP Caroline Lucas tables a parliamentary motion calling for the Researchers at Risk scheme, introduced to assist Ukrainian academics and their families, to be extended to Palestinian academics. (THE, 2 April 2024)


20 March: The Chartered Institute of Housing’s 2024 Review analyses the UK housing system for recent migrants and finds that housing policy fails to address ethnic inequalities. (Chartered Institute of Housing, 20 March 2024; Housing Today, 20 March 2024)

21 March:  A Department of Work and Pensions report featuring the latest official figures on UK poverty shows that the number of people living below the poverty line in working households is 1.6 million higher than in 2010. (DWP, 21 March 2024; TUC, 21 March 2024)

24 March: The European Roma Rights Centre calls on the Italian authorities to investigate the role of institutional negligence in the death in January of Michelle, a 6-year-old Romani girl who was electrocuted and died at the segregated Romani Giugliano camp in Naples. (ERRC, 24 March 2024)

26 March: The ONS scraps plans to stop releasing figures on the deaths of homeless people after outcry that the decision was callous. (Guardian, 26 March 2024)


19 March: The 2023 NHS England Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) report reveals that 17 percent of NHS BME staff experienced discrimination. BME nurses are still far less likely to be hired or promoted and are more likely to be bullied or abused. (Nursing Times, 19 March 2024; Unison, 19 March 2024; Independent, 20 March 2024)

25 March: The Health Foundation finds that each year almost 9,000 foreign nurses from outside the EU are quitting the already understaffed NHS for better-paid work overseas. (Guardian, 25 March 2024)

26 March: In a case brought by Pa Edrissa Manjang and backed by the EHRC and App Drivers and Couriers Union, facial recognition checks on the Microsoft-powered Uber Eats app are ruled racially discriminatory. (BBC News, 26 March 2024)

28 March: A year after 80 black and brown migrant cleaners at Great Ormond Street Hospital launched a legal battle over historic racially discriminatory outsourcing practices in the NHS, an appeal against the court’s ruling begins. Workers seek compensation for the years they were denied NHS pay rates. (UVW Union, 28 March 2024)

30 March: An investigation finds that some Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat workers are reporting fellow riders to the Home Office as potentially undocumented workers. (inews, 30 March 2024)

30 March: The Home Office cuts funding to the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, as charities cite a ‘national scandal’ in adult social care and report a surge in calls to modern slavery helplines, while the GLAA reports a 400 percent increase in allegations of exploitation. (Guardian, 30 March 2024)


While we cannot cover all incidents of racist abuse on sportspersons or their responses, we provide a summary of the most important incidents. For more information follow Kick it Out.

22 March: Ahead of their international training camp, the French Football Federation (FFF) is reportedly prohibiting players from fasting for Ramadan, arguing that players can make up missed fasting days after the camp is over. (Time, 22 March 2024)

23 March: Addressing issues of fairness and impartiality at Parliament’s media committee, the BBC’s director of editorial policy and standards says the broadcaster may have ‘made a mistake’ in its coverage at the International Court of Justice which aired the entire Israeli defence on genocide charges while only showing portions of South Africa’s arguments. (Middle East Monitor, 23 March 2024)

24 March: In an open letter, employees at the Max Planck Society express disapproval of the German research institution’s public statements on the Israel-Palestine conflict, its increased funding for German-Israeli research collaboration, the firing of the Lebanese-Australian scholar Ghassan Hage and the fact that its only public mention of Palestinians blamed their ‘unspeakable suffering’ on Hamas. (Al Jazeera, 24 March 2024)

24 March: Following social media pressure, the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital responds to claims that a boy wearing ‘visibly Jewish’ clothing was mistreated by a nurse and that the boy was ‘scared’ as some staff wore ‘free Palestine’ badges. An investigation is ongoing. (Manchester Evening News, 24 March 2024)

26 March: Meta’s oversight board advises it to end its ‘blanket ban’ across all social media platforms on the Arabic word for martyr, finding that the censoring of the word ‘shaheed’ has had a ‘discriminatory impact on expression and news reporting’, with communities living in conflict zones like Gaza and Sudan being worst hit by the policy. (Middle East Eye, 26 March 2024)

27 March: Data from the Women’s Musician Insight Report finds that female musicians from minority ethnic groups earn less on average than white women, with 35 percent of ethnic minority women earning £7,000 or less, compared with 25 percent of white women. (Guardian, 27 March 2024)

30 March: Citing political neutrality and public safety as causes, Manchester popular art  venue HOME theatre cancels ‘Voices of Resilience’, a sold-out event of Palestine prose and poetry. The decision was reportedly taken after HOME received a letter from the Jewish Representative Council of Greater Manchester. (Deadline, 30 March 2024)


For details of court judgements on racially motivated and other hate crimes, see also POLICING | PRISONS | CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM.

 20 March: The European Roma Rights Centre calls on the Hungarian police to investigate the racially motivated beating, abduction and torture of Gábor Dudás, who was dumped in a well after his assault, by villagers of Jászkarajenő. (ERRC, 20 March 2024) 

27 March: Police investigate attacks on the Bilal Mosque in Manchester, which has suffered provocative incidents carried out by local Jewish youths that have been caught on video.  (Bury News, 27 March 2024) 

3 April: In Germany, the chair of the  North Rhine Westphalia State Integration Council says  that xenophobia and right-wing extremism are most likely behind an arson attack in Solingen that on 25 March claimed the lives of a Bulgarian Muslim  family of four, and injured 23 others, nearly all Muslims of Turkish origin from Turkey and Bulgaria. Initially, the public prosecutor ruled out a xenophobic motive, saying the crime was ‘interpersonal’ but investigations are now ‘open ended’. (InfoMigrants, 28 March 2024, World Socialist Web, 3 April 2024)


Asylum and migrant rights

20 March: A report by the Commission on the Integration of Refugees makes 16 recommendations for changes to the ‘broken’ asylum system, including allowing asylum seekers from shortage professions to work immediately on arrival in the UK, permitting all others to work after 6 months, and granting immediate access to free English classes. (Independent, 20 March 2024)

Borders and internal controls 

23 March: New evidence reveals French maritime police’s use of potentially fatal aggressive ‘pullbacks’ in the Channel. Backed by UK funding and under ‘nonstop’ pressure from the British government, footage shows police sharply circling a dinghy to create waves and flood it; threatening to use pepper spray and ramming a dinghy; and puncturing a boat at sea, forcing those onboard to swim ashore. (Observer, 23 March 2024)

24 March: Under the Common Travel Area arrangement between Ireland and Northern Ireland, the North West Migrants Forum warns that tax-paying migrant communities now face an ‘invisible hard border’ which could keep them from accessing cross-border health schemes. (Belfast Live, 24 March 2024)

2 April: In southern Albania, eight people believed to be migrants are killed in a car that swerves off the road and falls into a ravine. (Ekathimerini, 2 April 2024)

Reception and detention

19 March: The family of Leonard Farruku, who was found dead in a suspected suicide on the Bibby Stockholm, say the British government should be held responsible for his death, as a legal action is launched to force an inquiry and their lawyers call for the government to provide evidence relating to the death. (Guardian, 19 March 2024)

19 March: The government rejects the key recommendation of the Brook House inquiry into the mistreatment of detainees, to limit migrant detention to 28 days in immigration removal centres. (BBC, 19 March 2024)

24 March: The number of asylum seekers who died in Home Office accommodation in the first 6 months of 2023 is revealed to be nearly 3 times higher than previously disclosed. An FOI response to The Civil Fleet claimed there were 5 deaths, but the figure rose to 14 deaths in response to a second FOI request. (Guardian, 24 March 2024)

28 March: An apartment block in the German town of Solingen is subjected to a racially-motivated arson attack involving fire accelerant. A Bulgarian Muslim family of four—two parents in their twenties, a 3-year-old and a 5-month-year old—are killed in their attic apartment, while more than 20 others are injured. (InfoMigrants, 28 March 2024)

1 April: A letter to West Lindsey council from the minister for housing, planning and building states that RAF Scampton, scheduled to be used as accommodation for up to 2,000 asylum seekers within weeks, is contaminated with ‘ground gases, unexploded ordnance and ground contamination’. (Guardian, 1 April 2024) 


28 March: The UN’s Human Rights Committee calls on the UK to withdraw the discriminatory Safety Of Rwanda bill and to repeal the Illegal Migration Act which limits access to rights and removes protections for victims of trafficking. (EIN, 28 March 2024)


25 March:  The Court of Appeal refuses Shamima Begum permission to take her appeal against removal of her British citizenship to the Supreme Court. (Independent, 25 March 2024)

This calendar is researched by IRR staff and compiled by Sophie Chauhan, with the assistance of Graeme Atkinson, Sam Berkson, Margaret McAdam, Louis Ordish and Anne Singh. Thanks also to ECRE, the Never Again Association and Stopwatch, whose regular updates on asylum, migration, far Right, racial violence, employment and policing issues are an invaluable source of information. Find these stories and all others since 2014 on our searchable database, the Register of Racism and Resistance. 

Feature image: Justice for Bristol protestors outside Avon and Somerset police headquarters demanding justice for the Bristol #KillTheBill protestors March 2024. Credit: Netpol

The Institute of Race Relations is precluded from expressing a corporate view: any opinions expressed are therefore those of the authors.

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