The Conservatives are pitting the white working class against black people | Simon Woolley

Racial inequality is more obvious than ever. Yet, in a clear dogwhistle, the government denies it’s even a problem

  • Lord Woolley was chair of the No 10 race disparity unit until July 2020

It appears the government has found a new way to deal with deep-seated racial inequality in the UK: ignore it, deny it and claim to those on the receiving end of racism that it’s merely their “perception” rather than their lived experience.

Worse still, part of this government’s “radical” plan is to frame the debate – during this extraordinary year of disproportionate Covid-19 deaths and the killing of George Floyd – in a way that labels Black Lives Matter and other race equality campaigners and educators as somehow conspiring against white people. And to use this tactic particularly and cynically among white working-class voters in the north, many of whom played a significant role in last year’s Conservative general election victory.

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