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Shropshire Quaker group holds protest in support of Black Lives Matter - with video

By Charlotte Bentley | Bishop's Castle | News | Published:

A south Shropshire Quaker group held a demonstration in support of the Black Lives Matter movement at the centuries old 'African's Grave' in Bishop's Castle.

Clun Valley Quakers protest at African Graves in Bishop's Castle

Clun Valley Quakers held a short demonstration at the 'African’s Grave' in Bishops Castle churchyard, on Thursday, to support the Black Lives Matter movement and its demands for a more equal society.

The African Graves have been part of an ongoing National Lottery Heritage Fund-supported Georgians in Stone Project, which is researching stories behind the ancient graves in the St John The Baptist churchyard.

Watch: Statement from Clun Valley Quakers:

Shropshire Quaker group holds Black Lives Matter demonstration

In a statement, the Clun Valley Quakers said: "Quakers believe in the fundamental equality of all people, and that without justice there can be no peace.

"We therefore condemn the systemic racism that has led to the deaths of George Floyd and so many black people at the hands of the police in the US and here in Britain.

Clun Valley Quakers protest at the Africans' Graves in Bishop's Castle

"We are humbled by the huge contribution to our country that BAME people have made as health workers, carers, delivery drivers and service workers during the pandemic, and angry at the massive inequality they continue to face in pay, living conditions and access to justice.

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"We call on the Government to urgently produce a transformational plan with clear actions to address the inequalities faced by BAME people in employment, health, housing and the law and justice system.

Clun Valley Quakers protest at the Africans' Graves in Bishop's Castle

"We support Black Lives Matter and protests across the world, and share their aspirations for real change and a fairer society."

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Quaker member, Mary, added in an impassioned speech delivered that morning: "It’s easy to think that the issue of racism doesn’t affect us in a rural area, but it does, and has done for over 200 years.

Clun Valley Quakers protest at the Africans' Graves in Bishop's Castle

"England grew wealthy on the proceeds of the slave trade, and it is unacceptable that black people in this country still face so much prejudice and discrimination. Quakers campaigned against slavery then, and we are speaking out now: we must end racial injustice."

Charlotte Bentley

By Charlotte Bentley
Community Reporter - @CharlotteB_Star

Community Reporter at the Shropshire Star, helping under-represented communities to find a voice in Shropshire and Mid Wales. Contact me at charlotte.bentley@shropshirestar.co.uk.

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