Calendar of racism and resistance (19 September-3 October)

Calendar of racism and resistance (19 September-3 October)


Written by: IRR News Team

A fortnightly resource for anti-racist and social justice campaigns, highlighting the key events in the UK and Europe.

Asylum seekers and refugees

September: The ECtHR rules that conditions for migrants detained in a number of Greek police stations and immigration detention centres are so bad that they amounted to inhuman and degrading treatment, in two judgments, FH v Greece and Tatishvili v Greece. In the first case the court also condemned the lack of support for homeless asylum seekers and their lack of access to healthcare.

September: The migration committee of the Council of Europe’s parliamentary assembly calls on member states to ban the immigration detention of children.

September: The Attorney-General of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) issus an opinion on a case involving an African HIV-AIDS sufferer in Belgium, stating that the man could not be removed pending his appeal against the decision to remove him, and must be given access to basic subsistence and to non-emergency health treatment. (The A-G’s opinion is not binding on the Court but is usually followed.)

20 September: Swedish radio reports that a homeless Roma man from Romania has died from injuries sustained following a fire at a tent camp in Högdalen, southern Sweden on 31 August, and that an internal police investigation has been opened into why the fire was treated as an accident rather than possible arson. (Sverigesradio, 20 September 2014)

22 September: Open Democracy reports on the conditions inside short-term holding facilities for asylum seekers in the UK. (Open Democracy, 22 September 2014)

23 September: A protest take place outside the Home Office following the death of Bangladeshi man Rubel Ahmed in Morton Hall detention centre in Lincolnshire. (Channel 4 News, 23 September 2014)

23 September: New research from Freedom From Torture finds that Tamil asylum seekers are still being deported from the UK despite evidence of torture. (Guardian, 23 September 2014)

29 September: Police in North-Rhine Westphalia raid a housing facility for asylum seekers in Burbach, run by the private company Europe Homecare, after the press circulate photos of a security guard with his boot on the neck of a handcuffed man lying on the floor. At least four male security guards are under investigation after filming and photographing their actions on their mobile phones. (BBC News, 29 September 2014)

Policing and criminal justice system

18 September: A motorist who was beaten and sprayed with CS gas by officers from the Metropolitan police in Edgware in 2011 wins £120,000 in damages after being wrongfully accused of driving without insurance. (Guardian, 18 September 2014)

18 September: The Independent Police Complaints Commission is conducting an investigation following allegations that a 16-year-old African-Caribbean boy was strip-searched in a police van in a car park in Southend. (BBC News, 18 September 2014)

19 September: The High Court rules that the Ministry of Justice’s consultation process on cuts to the legal aid budget was so unfair that it is illegal. (Guardian, 19 September 2014)

22 September: The Equality and Human Rights Commission announces an investigation into Scotland Yard after allegations that references to discrimination were deleted from internal reports. (Guardian, 22 September 2014)

25 September: The high court rules that Met police officer PC Andrew Birks is not allowed to resign to become a church deacon as he is facing disciplinary proceedings following the death of Sean Rigg in police custody in 2008. (Sussex Argus, 26 September 2014)

26 September: The family of Leon Briggs who died while in the custody of police in Luton criticise a Channel 4 ‘fly-on-the-wall’ documentary examining the work of Bedfordshire police. (BBC News, 25 September 2014)

26 September: Campaigners criticise the Independent Police Complaints Commission for failing to name a 47-year-old man who died after being arrested by police in Holloway. (Islington Tribune, 26 September 2014)

26 September: An inquest jury records an accidental death verdict into the death of Sri Lankan refugee Satheeskumar Mahathevan who died three days after being found hanged in his cell at Pentonville prison after failures to asses his mental health. His family were refused visas to attend the inquest and were not allowed a video-linkup to the proceedings. (Islington Tribune, 19 September 2014)

29 September: Nottinghamshire police join a pilot scheme to map usage of stop and search powers. (BBC News, 29 September 2014)

30 September: In his final party conference speech before next year’s general election, David Cameron pledges to abolish the Human Rights Act and place restrictions on freedoms of movement. (Guardian, 1 October 2014)

Violence and harassment

15 September: A nurse who became notorious on You Tube after she was filmed uttering racist obscenities at fellow passengers on a South London tram in 2011 has been struck off from the dental practice register. (Croydon Guardian, 15 September 2014)

18 September: The first anniversary of the murder of the anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas is marked by the unveiling of a sculpture on the spot where he died in the western Athens district of  Keratsini. (Icare, 26 September 2014)

23 September: Camden School for Girls bans a sixth-form student from wearing a niqab to school. (Independent, 23 September 2014)

23 September: The London Barbican closes a controversial exhibition on slavery following protests. (Guardian, 24 September 23014)

24 September: A fifteen-year-old boy who racially abused and fractured the face of a school bus driver in North Wales narrowly avoids a custodial sentence. (North Wales Pioneer, 24 September 2014)

24 September: A 12-year-old Muslim boy is left with cuts and bruises after being assaulted by two men in a racist attack outside his home in Somercotes, Laindon. (Basildon Recorder, 1 October 2014)

24 September: Two houses in south Belfast are damaged in attacks which are treated by the police as hate crimes. Windows are smashed, and graffiti is daubed on the properties. (BBC News, 25 September 2014)

25 September: An industrial tribunal finds that Rosemary Clarke was forced to leave her job at Brent Council because of harassment, bullying and discriminatory treatment. (Get West London, 25 September 2014)

26 September: Two brothers are convicted of their involvement in a racist attack on Polish taxi drivers in Weymouth. (Dorset Echo, 26 September 2014)

1 October: A 27-year-old Chinese delivery driver is stabbed in an attack by three men, in the Drylaw area of Edinburgh, which the police are treating as racially motivated. (Edinburgh Evening News, 2 October 2014)

Extreme-Right politics

19 September: Paul Golding of Britain First appears in court charged with the harassment of a person in their home and wearing a uniform signifying association with a political organisation. (This is Local London, 19 September 2014)

28 September: In elections for the French Senate, the FN wins two seats, its first seats ever in the upper chamber of the French parliament. (Guardian, 28 September 2014)

2 October: The BNP announces the expulsion of honorary president Nick Griffin after he is accused of trying to ‘destabilise’ the party. (BBC News, 2 October 2014)

National Security

25 September: The appeal court has rules that a forthcoming terrorism trial must be held partly in secret. (Guardian, 24 September 2014)

1 October: Moazzam Begg is released from prison, after spending over seven months on remand, after being acquitted of seven terrorism offences. (Guardian, 1 October 2014)

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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