George Floyd: a stament from the Care4Calais founder
George Floyd’s death is just the tip of the iceberg. Every day, globally, people are victimised and subjected to cruelty because of their race. The hope in George Floyd’s story is that it leads to an awakening, that sees all of us take strides towards ending discrimination and racism wherever we see it.
I see racism and discrimination every day in Calais, where I work with people fleeing persecution from all over the world.
These people are not afforded rights or respect. The French police beat them with batons and rip down their tents as part of brutal evictions. In the Mediterranean, people drown to death and we fail to save them. The UK Government pursues policies that dehumanise and endanger people it sees as outsiders.
We have to hope George Floyd’s death can be a turning point. We can as societies think again about how we treat people of colour. We can recognise our privilege and change the way we treat the disenfranchised and dispossessed.
George Floyd’s death is a tragedy. The terrifying, cruel way he died makes me feel desperately sad: for his family, for America and for people of ethnic minorities all over the world.
Now is a time to try and understand the perspectives of the minorities we live alongside. The refugee camps of Calais would be a good place to start.