For Immediate Release
Baroness Lola Young Nominated for Grassroot Diplomat Award for Work on the Young Review
London, UK – April 20, 2016 – Baroness Young of Hornsey OBE has been shortlisted from over 100 politicians this year for the 4th Annual Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Award. The award recognises outstanding politicians and diplomats who are representing civilian interests at the highest level in areas of policy, social and business overall. Baroness Young was nominated for her work on the Young Review, which looks to improving outcomes for young black, and Muslim men in the Criminal Justice System (CJS).
In 2013, Baroness Young chaired a Task Group comprising ex-offenders and representatives from the voluntary, statutory, private and academic sectors to advise and help shape the Young Review.
Young black and Muslim men have been reported as experiencing intensive negative stereotyping within the CJS. Black prisoners, accounting 13.1% of the prison population, are stereotyped as drug dealers and gang members, and Muslim prisoners, who make up 13.4% of the total number, are often frequently stigmatised as extremists (2011). One prisoner who took part in the consultation noted: “We are fighting for a basic human right to practise our religion without being labelled extremists”, making it clear the disadvantage in BAME communities alongside assumptions based on crude stereotyping. Amongst the backdrop of racism and discrimination, offenders within this group have found it notoriously difficult to find employment and successfully resettle in society.
Baroness Young’s work in this area has helped the authorities to re-examine how the results for black, Asian and minority ethnic offenders can be improved for the general prison population and society at large. A key objective is to find the drivers to ensure that repeated patterns of offending are reduced.
There is now increased recognition across government, statutory agencies, the voluntary sector, and in particular, in communities, that these disproportionate outcomes, experienced by young black and Muslim men, represent a serious and substantial challenge for the CJS.
The work of Lord Bradley examining the situation for people with mental health needs in the CJS, Lord Harris’ independent review into self-inflicted deaths in custody, and the work of the Equality and Human Rights Commission into non-natural deaths of people with mental health conditions in state detention are all important milestones in the improvement in the CJS, as is the Young Review.
Baroness Young and colleagues from BTEG and Clinks have met with several Ministers working hard to discuss recommendations drafted in the Young Review with ongoing work on influencing positive recommendations in how to improve the system.
Talyn Rahman-Figueroa, Executive Director of Grassroot Diplomat, said: “All too often, we hear stories of our governments not representing our needs but Grassroot Diplomat looks upon selfless individuals in a position of power, who work tirelessly for their communities. The award seeks to create a culture of positive role models within our governments which encourages others like them to follow suit. Grassroot Diplomat winners go beyond their job descriptions and those shortlisted for the award should be proud to be recognised this far.”
In addition to the Young Review, Baroness Young have been involved in campaigns criminalising and combating modern forms of enslavement, and equalities issues that support diversity initiatives. Her most recent work includes raising consciousness amongst parliamentarians on the ethics and sustainability in fashion, and its link to modern slavery issues.
Join Baroness Young and other government nominees for the gala dinner at The May Fair Hotel, London on Wednesday 20th April, 2016. For ticket information please visit: http://www.grassrootdiplomat.org/book-tickets or call 07511 816689.
Further details about the awards can be found on: www.grassrootdiplomat.org/annual-awards
About Grassroot Diplomat
Grassroot Diplomat is a non-profit diplomatic consultancy with the mission to build trust and strengthen relationships between governments and civil society. As an independent agency, Grassroot Diplomat shows no allegiance to a solitary government but will act in the interest of the people, no matter where they are or what state their country is in. We focus on improving public diplomacy activities by engaging government officials on sustainable social campaigns and investment projects that offers a positive rate of return for their people.
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