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IPCC report shows police more likely to use force against black people

20 March 2016

Riot_Police_image_1

By Zephaniah Samuels
A new study on police use of force by the Independent Police Complaints Commisssion (IPCC) shows that black people, and those known to have mental health conditions are more likely to be subject to force when they come in contact with the police. These finding confirm the views that were voiced during a joint IPCC & BMH UK consultation event on the levels of coercion used by police, which fed into this report.

 

Chair of society of black lawyers, Judge Peter Herbert, sues MoJ for racism

15 March 2016

Society_of_black_lawyers_3Judge Peter Herbert OBE, chair of the Society of Back Lawyers has launched an action against the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), alleging race discrimination and victimisation.
A number of respected and high profile figures from the community including Baroness Doreen Laurence, Courtney Griffiths Q.C. and Michael Mansfield Q.C have spoken out publicly in his defence.

 

 

Government responds to Harris Review into self-inflicted prison deaths of young people

22 December 2015

Govt_response_to_the_Harris_ReviewBy Staff writer
The Government has published its response to the Harris Review into self-inflicted death in custody of 18-24 year olds, after a yearlong inquiry starting in April 2014, which made public it's final report in July 2015. Acknowledging that the 'prison system needs urgent reform', Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, Michael Gove made reference to plans for the Ministry of Justice to review the youth justice system in the New Year.

 

Rights Human Rights Day 2015

10 December 2015

HR_Day_50th_anniversary_-_3By Ruth Dayspring
Human Rights Day 2015 kicks of a year-long campaign marking the 50th anniversary of the two oldest international human rights treaties; the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, but race equality activists in the UK say that the rights and protections of these covenants are not afforded to large sections of black Briton, particularly those subject to detention under the Mental Health Act.

 

National report against torture in detained settings published

08 December 2015

Officers_peering_into_cellBy Staff writer
The sixth annual report of the UK's national mechanism for the prevention of torture and ill-treatment in detention in prisons, police custody, court cells, customs custody facilities, children's secure accommodation, immigration, military and mental health facilities is of particular importance to the UK's African Caribbean communities, as the group that continues to be disproportionately over represented in these settings. This year's report focuses on solitary confinement and isolation.

 

'Justice delay is justice denied'

16 March 2016

Judges_Gavel1News that the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) have sent the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) files of two black men who died in police custody while in need of mental health care, has raised questions over the protracted legal process surrounding such cases.    For timely justice to be served calls are being made for independent reports of any suspicious death while in the 'care' of the state to be referred directly to the CPS, cutting out years of waiting and the lengthy expensive inquest hearings that cannot result in convictions.

 

BMH UK gives evidence to APPG inquiry on mental health social work

15 March 2016

House_of_Commons._4jpgHuman rights campaigns group Black Mental Health UK was among the organisations who gave evidence to the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on social work's inquiry into mental social work. Dicussions focused around the need for  the reintroduction of a more wholistic person centered approach to care, rather than the medical model, that is usually acompanied by heavy foresnsic response, particularly when dealing with the needs of people from the UK's African Caribbean communities.

 

 

 

 

Health regulator, Care Quality Commission, rated 'ineffective'

21 December 2015

CQC_logo_3A parliamentary committee has found the Care Quality Commission to be an ineffective regulator. It also raised concerns about its ability to respond quickly and effectively to information from whistleblowers, service users and staff. This disturbing revelation confirms the fears of activists from the community who say that the poor treatment that black patients detained in mental health services have suffered, which has been raised with them, particularly around police on wards and Taser, has not been properly addressed by this watchdog.

 

'Unjust' treatment of black people by the criminal justice system confirmed by new MoJ report

09 December 2015

scales_of_justice___By Ruth Dayspring
New MoJ analysis showing that black people are to be more likely to be sent to prison than their white counterparts for similar offences, confirms ethnicity may be a significant factor in determining sentencing. Race equality activists have responded by pointing to the discrimination across the CJS as the driver behind what they say is the 'unjust' mass incarceration of young black men from the community.

 

Parliamentary committee on Human rights to scrutinise Policing and Criminal Justice Bill

26 November 2015

JCHR_imageBy Zephaniah Samuels
The Joint Committee on Human Rights has announced plans to scrutinise proposals set out in the Policing and Criminal Justice Bill, which has significant implications for people who use mental health services, and particularly those from the UK's African Caribbean communities, who continue to be subject to disproportionate and often unwanted contact with officers when in need of mental health care, both while in the community and even more disturbingly when detained on locked psychiatric wards.

 

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