Thursday 23rd June was a day of historic significance for the United Kingdom: in a closely contested referendum the UK voted to leave the European Union. Tensions have run high on both sides of the debate and the focus upon migration as a key consideration has had a profound impact upon many EU citizens currently living in the UK.
The initial implications of 'Brexit' will not be clear for some weeks and months to come as the government reforms following the Prime Minister's resignation and develops a strategy for managing the transition. However, as a nation the work begins now: bridging the 'leave/remain' divides that have fragmented our societies on both a local and national level.
At Dorset Race Equality Council we appeal to all members of our community to proceed in a spirit of mutual respect: seeking dialogue and understanding of the complex arguments upon which voters have based their choices. Moreover, we call upon all members of the community to be mindful of the thousands of EU citizens currently resident in Dorset, who may not have had the opportunity to vote, but are nevertheless impacted by the result of the referendum.
We recognise that throughout the referendum campaign emotive language and images have been used around the issue of migration: some of which have been widely considered to incite racism against migrants living in our communities. We have also been approached by individuals who feel targeted by some referendum campaign materials and perceive increased hostility from certain members of the community as they go about their daily lives.
Dorset Race Equality Council recognises the important contribution that migrants make to our local economy and community and emphatically rejects any form of hostility towards an individual or group upon the basis of their migratory status. We encourage anyone who experiences any such form of racism or discrimination to report their experiences to Dorset Police and/or approach us for advice and support.
As part of its wider plans for future health and care services, the Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has proposed changes to the organisation of Dorset’s acute hospitals. Two options have been considered and will be taken to the CCG's Governing Body on the 18th May 2016. To read about those options and to access the papers that will go to the Governing Body, please click on:CCG's proposals for local hospitals
After the formal proceedings there will be a short break when refreshments will be provided followed by our key note speaker Mark Forsyth from Red Cross who will speak on Refugees in Dorset.
The AGM provides an opportunity for people who are committed to issues of race equality and justice to come together and share information about challenging discrimination and promoting equality in Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole. Over the past twelve months, Dorset REC has been working hard to improve community relations, reduce hate crime and increase confidence in the justice system as well as building good relations with partnering organisations that share our views and mission across Dorset.