The audit release coincides with another study that shows the poorest BME households will see their living standards drop by 20 per cent because of austerity.
The government just released its racial disparity audit and it found there are “entrenched” disparities between ethnic communities in terms of work and life outcomes.
Theresa May launched a government website titled ‘ethnicity facts and figures’ at noon outlining how the country is divided along racial lines. It’s key findings include:
- The unemployment rate for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people (BAME) is nearly double (8 per cent) that of white British adults (4.6 per cent).
- 112 black men are sentenced to custody for every 100 white men (according to data from crown courts in 2014)
- Ethnic minorities are under-represented at senior levels across the public sector.
- Black Caribbean pupils were excluded from school at three times the rate of white British pupils.
- Only 32 per cent of white British pupils on free school meals reached the minimum standard at Key Stage 2 – worse than any other ethnic group.
- White people, Indians and Pakistanis are more likely to own their own home than black people.
The prime minister was expected to say: “people who have lived with discrimination don’t need a government audit to make them aware of the scale of the challenge.” Adding:
“But this audit means that for society as a whole – for government, for our public services – there is nowhere to hide.”
According to the BBC, most of the data on the website is already publicly available and no new data was commissioned for the audit.
However a report also released today by the Women’s Budget Group and the Runnymede Trust has conducted new research into disparities between ethnic groups in the UK and how they’re affected by austerity.
The report Intersecting Inequalities: The Impact of Austerity on BME Women found that as a result of Tory austerity and benefit and tax changes black and asian households with the lowest incomes will see living standards drop by 20 per cent.
“This equates to a real-terms average annual loss in living standards of between £8,407 and £11,678”, the report said.
The report also found that lone mothers (who represent 92% of lone parents) will experience an average drop in living standards of 18% (£8,790) between 2010 and 2020.
Omar Khan, Director of the Runnymede Trust said:
“Our economic analysis is the counterpart to the government’s racial disparity audit. What our research shows is that those who are already facing the greatest disadvantages and injustices are most affected.”
Dr Mary-Ann Stephenson, Co-Director of the Women’s Budget Group said, added: “Theresa May has been proved right. In 2010 she warned that ‘there are real risks that women, ethnic minorities, disabled people and older people will be disproportionately affected’ by the spending cuts planned by the Coalition Government”
“This report shows that for the poorest BME women in particular the impact of austerity has not simply been ‘disproportionate’, but devastating.”
Further details on the government’s ‘ethnicity facts and figures’ website can be found here.Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.
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