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Important - our party & diversity

February 10, 2018 9:32 AM
By Vince Cable

Vince Cable

From the start of my leadership, I have made improving our party's diversity a key priority.

I believe it is essential that our party is as diverse as the country we want to serve. A few minutes in almost any Liberal Democrat meeting sadly shows you we do not presently meet that standard.

Party President Sal Brinton commissioned Lord John Alderdice to write an independent review of our party's processes and culture, focusing specifically on race and ethnicity.

You can read a summary of the report here: libdems.org.uk/alderdice-report-race-ethnic-minorities-culture-liberal-democrats

Check out the report

John's report is clear: the Party at all levels has failed to engage sufficiently with Black and Minority Ethnic (BaME) communities.

John's report is also clear that new procedures aren't going to work. Every member at every level needs to do their bit to change the culture of the party.

Over the next weeks and months, we will be recommending steps you can take at all levels of the Party to be the change we need.

For now, here are some quick steps you can take locally to start engaging with BaME communities in your area:

Discover what you can do

We have to look hard at ourselves, and the way we operate and ensure that when organising events, constructing committees, chairing meetings and considering campaign themes, inclusion is always in our minds.

John's report is deliberately challenging, but I would urge you to read it and reflect on what you can do as a result.

Check out the report

As Jo Swinson rightly pointed out on the centenary of women's suffrage this week, our party's constitution calls on us all to "reject all prejudice and discrimination based upon race, colour, religion, age, disability, sex or sexual orientation and oppose all forms of entrenched privilege and inequality".

But constitutional ambition is not enough. We all need to play our part in changing our party's culture to reflect that ambition. That starts with each and every one of us taking this report seriously.

Thank you,

Vince

Vince Cable
Leader of the Liberal Democrats