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Archive for October 2009

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The City of Liverpool has one of the oldest established Chinese communities in Europe. Trade between the port and China dates back 175 years – and the first Chinese immigrants settled there about thirty years later in 1866.

Nowadays it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that economic migration into Britain is a relatively new thing. It’s easy to forget the many waves of immigration over centuries – creating the diverse society we are today.

Each community was new once, so I wondered if there are therefore some lessons to learn from such a long-established community about how such to settle and become part of the scenery.

Alan Seatwo came to Britain to study and settled here. He's now vice chair of the Liverpool Chinese Business association, so I thought he was the ideal person to discuss this.

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On Monday 26th October this year a large gang of youths surrounded and attacked a 22 year old gay man, James Parkes, as he left a bar in Liverpool City Centre. He was left with serious head injuries.

The attack is being treated by Police as a homophobic hate crime and some arrests have already been made.

This was not the first attack of its’ kind. Recently another gay man was beaten to death in Trafalgar Square London. Going back further there have been many other such atrocities, including the murder in Liverpool of Michael Causer last year.

Liverpool’s Lesbian and Gay community is holding a vigil in the city on Sunday November 1st as the nation increasingly wakes up to the reality of homophobic violence.

In my official capacity as Chair of the North West Region’s Equality and Diversity Group I agreed with my associates that I would make this statement of support to the organisers of the vigil.

You can read the text of the statement here.

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