The Infiltration of the British National Party (BNP) into the Political Landscape

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2002 National Black Members' Conference
6 June 2002
Carried as Amended

The issue of race is sensitive now as at anytime in the 25 years of the Commission for Racial Equality’s existence. The far right is on the rise across Europe and, in this country, the BNP has gained a foothold in local government and this is very disturbing.

There have been race riots in several cities, such as Oldham, Burnley, and anti-semitic attacks are on the increase. The BNP must be kept in perspective. They won three seats out of 6000. Fortunately they did not win any seats in Oldham in that canvassing by Coalition Against Racism (CAR) and UNISON activists thwarted the BNP’s efforts. It is disturbing that BNP’s victories reflect it is believed that there are some deep divisions within our communities, often fuelled not by race but by poverty, poor housing, poor education, no employment opportunities, by people feeling that the existing political system is not necessarily responding to their need.

The CRE is of the opinion that if we are to create social cohesion then we have to be concerned about all communities not just about black communities or Asian communities. Unless we as a society begin to tackle the problems of young, disaffected black and white men, we will not reduce racial violence.

Conference, therefore, requests the NBMC/NEC/CRE to meet, discuss and ascertain the underlying cause(s) of racial violence and develop a strategy for reducing racial violence and for thwarting the efforts of the BNP so that they do not get a foothold in the political landscape.