View all news

Extending democracy in Bristol

Press release issued: 29 January 2002

Extending democracy in Bristol

The number of people from ethnic minorities at Westminster and in local government has been rising over the past decade - but not in Bristol, where the numbers have dropped. Identifying ways of tackling this issue is one of the key purposes of a new study to be published on Thursday [January 24].

Over a 25 year period, seven ethnic minority councillors were elected to serve Bristol, but at present there are none.

Dr Hassan Bousetta, author of the report, and Professor Tariq Modood, MBE, Director of the Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship at Bristol University, will present their findings at Bristol's Black Development Agency in Russell Town Avenue at 12 noon on Thursday. They will explain that urgent positive action is necessary to address the shortcomings.

The report, called Extending democracy, was produced by the University in partnership with Bristol City Council. Its aim was to look at the political participation, consultation and representation of Black and other ethnic minority people in Bristol.

Key recommendations in the report include:

  • the Council should encourage more ethnic minority people to vote;

  • the Council should work at raising awareness among political parties;

  • the Council should strive to increase ethnic minority people's participation in the running of their city through new forms of consultation;

  • the Council should review the work of the city's Race Forum to help it function efficiently, autonomously and with sufficient resources;

  • the Council should make equality and diversity mainstream concerns and define clear objectives in a high profile, multicultural democracy plan.

Dr Bousetta said: 'Bristol is a multicultural city but ethnic minority people, although concentrated in a small number of wards, have not had a distinctive influence on electoral outcomes in these wards.

'It's encouraging that the City Council is concerned about these issues and has taken the step of working with us on the production of this report.'

Back to archive

Copyright: 2001 The University of Bristol, UK
Updated: Tuesday, 29-Jan-2002 09:41:59 GMT

Edit this page