The Liberal Democrat Campaign for Race Equality embraces the Liberal Democrats' aim to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, seeking to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity, upholding values of individual and social justice, rejecting all prejudice and discrimination based upon race, colour, religion, age, disability, sex or sexual orientation, and opposing all forms of entrenched privilege and inequality. In particular we are dedicated to the elimination of racial inequality.
We recognise that the long shadow of our country's colonial past continues to be cast over the centuries-old struggle for race equality, and that real integration within our society has yet to be achieved. Too many of those in positions of power and influence, no matter how great or insignificant, fail to recognise that our society has yet to reach the point where positive action is no longer required, nor recognise their own responsibility to work to bring this about.
Race discrimination continues to blight Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities and individuals, within education, health, housing, criminal justice, government, politics, the arts and media, and in the world of work.
We accept the definition of institutional racism as defined by the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry as "the collective failure of an organisation to provide an appropriate and professional service to people because of their colour, culture or ethnic origin. It can be seen or detected in processes, attitudes and behaviour which amount to discrimination through unwitting prejudice, ignorance, thoughtlessness and racist stereotyping which disadvantages ethnic people."
We therefore seek changes in society to bring an end to racism in all its forms, working in partnership with like-minded organisations and harnessing the ideals and determination of our Party, to achieve the equal right of BAME individuals to live their lives free from discrimination, and to break out of the straitjacket of stereotype so often imposed by the majority.
In this way economic, political, social and community life will be enriched and enhanced by the achievement of real diversity, and will shine a light to fade the long shadow of colonialism and racism.