‘Biggest crisis since Princess Diana death’: Chesterfield Stand up to Racism issues powerful statement after Harry and Meghan interview with Oprah Winfrey
The Chesterfield branch of Stand up to Racism has described the race issues raised by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in their interview with Oprah Winfrey as ‘very disturbing’ – and said it has ‘brought about the biggest crisis since the death of Princess Diana’ for the Royal Family.
Meghan Markle said Prince Harry had been asked by an unnamed family member ‘how dark’ their son Archie’s skin might be.
In a statement, Buckingham Palace said: “The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.
"The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning.
“Whilst some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately.
“Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members.”
In response, Jeannie Robinson, of Chesterfield Stand up to Racism, said: “Millions watched the Meghan and Harry interview on Monday night and most would have been very disturbed by the revelations.
“The programme showed that racism is still deeply embedded in our institutions and in the media.
“Rather than celebrate that the Royal Family was beginning to reflect multi-racial Britain through the birth of Archie, this event has brought about the biggest crisis since the death of Princess Diana.”
She added: “Stand up to Racism does not believe that racism is just a few ‘bad apples’ but a social problem rooted in Britain’s imperial past.
“In order to justify the slave trade and the profits that enriched Britain, a set of ideas were developed that black people were inferior and sub-human.
“They could be bought and sold like any goods in the market.
“Colonial expansion across the globe was justified as a civilising mission.
“These ideas and the inequalities which came with them have left a legacy for us today.
“An example is the disproportionate deaths of black, Asian and minority ethnic people during the pandemic which are linked to structural inequalities.
“The strength of the Black Lives Matter movement in Britain is testament to the fact that black people know they are discriminated against at work, in education, in housing, in the health service.
“The hostile environment for migrants and refugees is still in place.
“However, the fact that we have a vibrant anti-racist movement in Britain involving both black and white people is to be celebrated.
“That our premiership players still take the knee is important because the racist abuse still keeps flowing.”
Chesterfield Football Club has produced a video involving involving senior players and staff opposing racism.
This will go out on the Spireites’ social media at 2pm on March 20 to celebrate United Nations Anti-Racism Day.
Ms Robinson said Chesterfield Stand up to Racism was ‘proud’ with the club’s video.
She added: “We are also proud that Chesterfield Borough Council is supporting an initiative for children in schools to design a poster or write a poem to go out on that day.
“And we are proud that local faith groups and trade unions have pledged support for events on that day.
“March 20 will be a day we can stand together in solidarity against racism.”
To find out more, visit linktr.ee/DerbyshireSUTR.