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Investigated or ignored? An analysis of race-related deaths since the Macpherson Report / H. Athwal, Jon Burnett

Race & Class, Volume: 56, Issue: 1, Pages: 22 - 42

Swansea University Author: Jon Burnett

Abstract

This article examines ninety-three deaths with a known or suspected racial element in the UK that took place between the publication of the Macpherson Report in February 1999, and December 2013. Of these, 97 per cent of the victims were from BAME communities (including those from Gypsy or Traveller...

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Published in: Race & Class
ISSN: 0306-3968 1741-3125
Published: London Sage Publications 2014
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa33855
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Abstract: This article examines ninety-three deaths with a known or suspected racial element in the UK that took place between the publication of the Macpherson Report in February 1999, and December 2013. Of these, 97 per cent of the victims were from BAME communities (including those from Gypsy or Traveller communities and European migrant workers). Particular groups of BAME people are at risk – asylum seekers, new migrants, students and those working in the night-time economy. In only a quarter of the cases was the allegation of racism accepted and prosecuted as such, with racial motivation factored into sentencing. The over-strict interpretation of the legal provisions for racial motivation may be inhibiting the (racial) charging of perpetrators and removing the racial context of a crime from the court room. It also appears that if authorities, including the police, had, on occasion, intervened earlier, against persistent harassment and low-level abuse, some deaths might have been prevented.
Keywords: BAME communities, criminal justice system, Crown Prosecution Service, harassment, inquests, Macpherson Report, policing, racial violence, self-defence, sentencing, Stephen Lawrence
College: Hillary Rodham Clinton School of Law
Issue: 1
Start Page: 22
End Page: 42