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Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter

We stand in solidarity with black people and all who are oppressed and discriminated against.

The Voice and Influence Partnership was set up to help give voice to some of the least heard people in Bristol, and the events of the last few weeks have felt monumental and as if lasting change could finally be happening.

The brutal and senseless killing of George Floyd and the many other lives lost in the USA and UK as a result of prejudice motivated by hate have resonated across the country.

Communities everywhere have raised their voices to say loudly and unequivocally that Black Lives Matter and that the time for change has come.

Here in Bristol, we saw one of the most visible expressions of the strength of feeling in the toppling of the statue of slave trader Edward Colston.

But to progress, we must stay focused on the main issue of systemic racism. The journey will need to be sustained and supported for it to be successful. That it will take society as a whole, not just the activists and the communities at the heart of the movement. That we will all need to step up, take action and take responsibility for where we go now, and who we choose to become as a nation.

VIP works with and represents a wide range of communities including, Black Asian and minority ethnic communities, people over 55, LGBTQ+, and disabled people, as well as people of faith. We know that oppression and discrimination have no boundaries and that to work together with a shared goal of equality is our greatest chance to create lasting change.

We hope this message can be the start of a conversation and over the next few weeks we will be reaching out to you directly and through the organisations that make up the Partnership to hear from you and let you know what we are doing.

If you have been affected in any way by hate crime, including any form of racism, you can report it to, and get support from, VIP Partner SARI – Stand Against Racism & Inequality.

Pete Clasby
VIP Project Manager