16 May 2019
Time: 7:00 - 8:30pm
Venue: Arts Two Lecture Theatre, Queen Mary University of London, Mile End Road, London, E1 4NS
Who represents London?: Ethnicity, gender, and party in local government
Councillor Asma Begum - Deputy Mayor, Tower Hamlets
Sunder Katwala - Director, British Future
Mercy Muroki - co-author of the study
Councillor Johnson Situ - Cabinet Member, Peckham
Professor Tony Travers - LSE
Janet Daby- MP for Lewisham East
London's local government has served as a locus for ethnic minority political engagement for decades. The local arena was an important site for black and Asian political activity during the 1960s and 70s when much of the responsibility for tackling racism was passed to local government. When the first three black MPs entered the House of Commons in 1987, they had all served as local councillors beforehand. To this day, local office continues to be a gateway into national office for ethnic minorities. Despite this, very little is known about how representative local councillors are of London's population.
A new study by Queen Mary alumna Mercy Muroki and academic Prof. Philip Cowley reports local black and Asian representation across London for the first time in over 20 years. The study shows that, despite some advances, black and Asian Londoners continue to be underrepresented in most boroughs. Black men, in particular, see the poorest levels of representation whilst Asian men see the best levels. The study also found huge disparities between representation amongst Conservative and Labour councillors.
Join our panel to explore the current state of black and Asian representation across London, the reasons behind this, and what this means for the future."
Entry is free (though booking is essential) and you are welcome to join us for a drinks reception afterwards.