'Take action to stamp out racism' says NASUWT
on World Anti-Racism Day
On World Anti-Racism Day (21 March 2014), the NASUWT is challenging government administrations across the UK to demonstrate stronger leadership and to take action to stamp out racism.
Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers’ union, said:
“In the rush towards policies of financial austerity, governments across the UK are in danger of taking a backward step on racial equality.
As the problems of racial inequality and racial intolerance appear to be on the increase, the need for action on anti-racism remains urgent.
However, in recent years, government decisions to abandon national programmes and grass-roots support to tackle the long and unacceptable legacy of racism and discrimination are having a profoundly damaging impact on community relations and community cohesion.
Racism is blight on our schools and on society but it is not inevitable and it can be tackled through committed and resilient leadership by government.
Government administrations across the UK must ensure that important safeguards are in place to protect children, young people and staff in schools from the appalling abuse of prejudice, intolerance and racial hatred.
Racial inequality is one of the key barriers to individual aspiration, social mobility and economic recovery.
Regrettably, schools are not immune from the problem of racism, and there is evidence that some schools are being targeted by racist extremists who are jeopardising the safety and security of children and young people at school.
Racism will not be tackled effectively until there is political leadership across the board to put the issue on the agenda and to take the steps necessary to tackle the problem.
The NASUWT has long maintained that preventing members of racist and fascist organisations from serving as school leaders, governors and teachers in schools would send out a strong and powerful message about the unacceptability of racism. Ministers must now honour their commitments to take action to stamp out racism.”
Equal access to education for women & girls
must be tackled, says NASUWT
The gender discrimination and inequality which prevents millions of women and girls worldwide from accessing education must be urgently addressed, the NASUWT, the largest teachers’ union, has stated on International Women’s Day (8 March).
The stark reality is that in the 21st Century, two thirds of the almost 800 million illiterate people in the world today are women, and 32 million girls worldwide have no access to schooling.
The NASUWT has produced a Declaration of Intent, which calls on governments in the UK and worldwide to make universal free primary and secondary education a reality for all girls and young women. It also calls for action to tackle violence, discrimination and exploitation against women and girls.
Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:
“It is scandalous that despite a wealth of international agreements, women and girls continue to be denied access to quality education and decent life chances as a result of gender discrimination, intimidation and violence.
This continuing injustice robs women and girls of their dignity and denies them their opportunity to make full use of their talents, knowledge and skills for the benefit of wider society.
Addressing this inequality should be a global priority.
It is one of the most pressing human rights issues facing the world today.”