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"No such thing as systemic racism and racial profiling in the UK"

Updated: Feb 7, 2021

Too often people like to speak without knowing the facts, and in the current climate I have heard too many times that systemic racism and racial profiling doesn’t exist in the UK... Below are 5 facts I pulled very easily from the latest government reports on race and the criminal justice system in the UK. The facts paint a very different picture to the narrative that systemic racism and racial profiling doesn’t exist. The last point acknowledges the importance of doing your own research and not just taking everything you see on the news at face value.

  1. In 2017/2018, Black people were over 3 times as likely to be arrested as White people and people with Mixed ethnicity people were nearly twice as likely to be arrested as White people

  2. The proportion of stop and searches conducted on White suspects decreased from 75% (in 2014/15) to 59% in 2018/19 and increased for all minority ethnic groups, with an increase from 13% to 22% in Black suspects

  3. In 2017, the Black and Mixed ethnic groups had the lowest conviction ratios for male defendants (at 79.2% and 79.3%), and the Black female defendants (at 74% ), despite being arrest at higher rates

  4. In 2018, White offenders had a lower average custodial sentence length for indictable offences than all other ethnic groups (a statistic that has been consistent since 2014), even though a higher proportion of White offenders had a long history of offending

  5. In 2018, Black prisoners served the greatest proportion of their original sentence in custody

  6. In a research study conducted by Cardiff University on UK media coverage of young black men, we see that the print and broadcast media is mainly focused on crimes, such as young people being victims of murder or committing murders. Of 117 news items researched (in 2008/9), 62% of them referenced young black boys with the term “Gang”…I would love to see some more recent statistics on the topic because it is this negative dramatization of black people in the media that causes ignorance and makes people think that over policing and systemic racism does not exist in the UK

UK Government data

Media study data


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