Cllr Cleo Lake said in the meeting: “Reparations, as I hope was made clear in this motion, does include but goes beyond monetary compensation. The contribution of African civilisation, culture and people versus how we have been treated is one of the world’s great paradoxes". She added later: "I want to be very clear this is not about rewriting history, but rather about casting a bright light on it. Instead of clinging to comforting myths about Britain’s heritage, let’s face up to the reality of our history – let’s talk about it – and let’s learn from that to create a better future for all of us.”
Mayor Marvin Rees acknowledged the complexities in conversations around race, class and social immobility and spoke of the need for discussions around reparatory justice to be attached to real policy. He added: “I’m not just a mayor, I still experience the world as a black man and, even within this organisation, I experience the consequences of having black skin. Race does not disappear just because we want to wish it away.”
Read more here. Watch a recording of the meeting here.