This news post was adapted by a presentation given by Nelson Cummins from the Coalition of Racial Equality and Rights at the SEIN Network meeting in October 2021
Every year in the month of October in the UK we celebrate and commemorate Black History Month, highlighting the hidden histories of the country, and the stories and contributions of Black and Ethnic Minority British People.
The Roots of Black History Month
Black History Month has happened every October (1st-31st) in the UK since 1987 and was founded by a multiracial group from the Greater London Council. The aim of the month is to focus on hidden histories of Black and Minority Ethnic people in the UK. The month centres Black people in the UK, but recognises the shared oppression of minority ethnic people through colonialism and racism. Black History Month in Scotland has been coordinated by the Coalition of Racial Equality and Rights since 2001.
This Year’s Programme
This year the programme has over 70 events (mix of online and in person) from over 40 organisations. Most of the events are free and accessible, and there is still plenty to come. There are walking tours, film screenings, concerts exhibitions, talks etc. You can see the full programme here. CRER coordinate the programme and are always looking for contributors and encourage organisations to put events on over the month. If you’d like to add anything to the programme, or find out how you can get involved next year, email Nelson (email@example.com).
Legacy and Impact of the Month
Black History Month is not only a month of celebration, but a month of awareness raising, and highlighting the importance of Black histories being taught in schools (all year round) and being rightfully seen as Scotland’s history. The history of colonialism still impacts the lives of Black and Ethnic Minority people in Scotland today, and it’s import that we collectively know about this past, so we can collectively work towards an equal future.
Wider Work of CRER
- CRER have lots of publications on their website; there is an introduction to anti racist curriculum development, which is a guide for teachers and aimed at support better practice in Scotland’s schools.
- They have also been commissioned by the Scottish Government to support the implementation of a review into structural racism in Scotland, and that can be found on the Scottish Government website.
- You can also sign up for the equalities updates emails that circulate information about the work of CRER.
- CRER facilitate their own network: the Glasgow Voluntary Sector Race Equality Network which meets four time a year, and is steered by members and their concerns. The group is open to all who work in/with BME communities.
Black History Resources from the SEIN Library
- Black and British: A Forgotten History – David Olusoga (2017)
- Black and British: A short, essential history – David Olusoga (2020)
- For the Love of Teaching: The Anti-Racist Battlefield in Education – Mary Osei-Oppong (2020)
- It Wisnae Us – The Truth about Glasgow and Slavery – Stephen Mullen (2009)
- Me and White Supremacy: How to Recognise Your Privilege, Combat Racism and Change the World – Layla F Saad (2020)
- Natives – Race & Class in the Ruins of Empire – Akala (2019)
- No Problem Here – Understanding Racism in Scotland – Edited by Neil Davidson, Minna Liinpää, Maureen McBride, Satnam Virdee – (2018)
- This Book is Anti-Racist – Tiffany Jewell & Aurélia Durand (2020)
- Who Belongs to Glasgow? – 200 Years of Migration – Mary Edward (1993)
- Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race – Reni Eddo-Lodge (2017)
If you’d like to borrow any of these books please email us firstname.lastname@example.org