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Opinion: Tackling hate crime is still a key priority

PUBLISHED: 08:30 18 May 2019

City & East Assembly Member Unmesh Desai has not given up on tackling knife crime.

City & East Assembly Member Unmesh Desai has not given up on tackling knife crime.

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I recently attended an event organised by the council to mark the 26th anniversary of the murder of Stephen Lawrence.

Stephen's tragic death was a defining moment of the last few decades, with the subsequent MacPherson inquiry identifying the institutional racism corroding our society and setting a framework for improving race relations between the public and our police.

It was great to see the borough's St George's Day celebrations and see the Town Hall fly our flag. Sadly, in the past, we have seen elements of the far-right try and hijack the event, so it was very positive to see the council as the civic voice of the borough send out a powerful unifying message by holding such an event.

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Tackling hate crime in all of its forms continues to be one of my priorities as your local assembly member. Unfortunately, we are seeing racism continue to rear its ugly head in football stadiums across the country.

For this reason, I hosted a Show Racism the Red Card event at City Hall where the leader of the council, Darren Rodwell, spoke about work being done through football in the community to promote cohesion.

Finally, I had the privilege of judging a public speaking event at Barking Abbey School which highlighted the best of our young talent and I simply can't wait for the borough's summer of festivals!

So, onwards and upwards as they say and every reason to be cheerful when looking to our future!

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