Guest contributor Catherine Blaiklock, a former UKIP candidate at the 2017 General Election, publishes this open letter to English Heritage bosses questioning their new training programme aimed at Black, Asian or ‘Minority Ethnic Heritage’ people. Despite sending this to the chair, chief executive and head of human resources, she is yet to have a reply more than a fortnight on…
Dear English Heritage,
Thank you for providing information on your new Heritage Training Placements programme for ethnic minorities as described at this web address.
I wonder how you define ‘ethnic’. I have two daughters, you see, and they are both half-Nepalese. Does that fit your ‘Minority Ethnic Heritage’ definition? They have both English and Nepalese names: so, if one applied as Zangmu Llama, I presume her application would be accepted? Whereas if she applied as Jane Hawes, may I presume it would be rejected?
To complicate things further, one of my daughters looks Asian. She has ‘Mongoloid’ eyes and an epicanthic fold. My other daughter doesn’t – she has white skin and dark hair and eyes. She is often told she looks Spanish or Brazilian. If she were to apply, would she need to prove her ethnic mix? How do you determine who is ‘ethnic enough’? Do you ask questions about the sex lives of applicants’ parents, or do you require birth certificates? What happens if a birth certificate does not record the father’s name?
And anyway, what exactly counts as ‘ethnic’? Does a Jewish man or woman count as an ethnic minority? You see many Jewish people look exactly like my daughter. Does Spanish count as ‘ethnic’? What about my previous husband who was half Singaporean and half British? He and his brother looked completely different: one looked Chinese and the other looked Caucasian. Does 25 per cent ‘ethnic’ count? Does 12.5 per cent count? Where does ‘ethnic’ end?
Would it be accurate to say that if two children of one English mother applied, one with an English father and 10 A stars at GCSE, and the other with an ‘ethnic’ father but 1 grade C at GCSE, you would only accept an application from the latter? Do you believe this is fair?
Your offer of training places exclusively to ‘ethnic’ applicants appears to breach anti-discrimination law. Why should one race of people be denied a training placement at the expense of another just because of their skin pigmentation? Isn’t that the opposite of equality?
Martin Luther-King looked forward to a time when people would not be judged by the colour of their skin. I wonder what he would have said about English Heritage’s latest policy for “improving workforce diversity” through open discrimination.
With a falling birth rate and native Britons becoming a minority in an increasing number of British towns and cities, does English Heritage have any position on how to promote and conserve white English people? Or does it only work one way?
Standing up for those without a voice in Britain
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