Rural agencies must deliver support to ethnic minorities

Public and third sector agencies should develop strategies that
address the needs of all ethnic minority groups, according to
recommendations of a new report on rural racism in Scotland by the
Commission for Racial Equality and Inverness College.

The study, undertaken in Angus, the Highlands, North Ayrshire
and the Western Isles, finds widespread experience of racism,
discrimination and isolation.

This is reflected in a low-uptake – and knowledge of – service
provision among ethnic minority groups.

It also highlights “a predominant assumption among service
providers in rural areas that minority ethnic groups do not have
particular needs because they are a small number.”

Calling for change, head of the Commission for Racial Equality
in Scotland Dharmendra Kanani said: “The Race Relations Amendment
Act 2000 has delivered a new legislative context which makes
numbers irrelevant for tackling racial inequality and this must be
taken forward to develop new models of service delivery for
minority ethnic groups in rural areas to address inequalities

Report author Philomena de Lima urged rural agencies to take
positive steps to ensure that race equality is “firmly embedded in
their policies and practice, irrespective of numbers”.

“There is no longer any doubt that minority ethnic households in
rural communities have specific needs that are not being

Needs Not Numbers from

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