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The minority ethnic and migrant community experience in NI: Hate crime and policing culture

13 September 2021

In an evidence session focused on experiences of racism, hate crime, immigration and policing, MPs will hear from representative groups for refugees, asylum seekers and the migrant community in Northern Ireland. Racism is the leading motivation of all hate incidents reported to the police, according to data from the PSNI. High profile incidents include an arson attack on Belfast Multi-Cultural Association earlier this year, which police said was a deliberate hate crime.

Purpose of the session

MPs on the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee will also probe policing culture and practices, with questions to serving PSNI officers representing Black and ethnic minority officers in Northern Ireland. Trust in policing among minority ethnic and migrant communities, the level of unreported incidents and the threat from paramilitary groups are likely to be discussed. The session will hear perspectives on the Government’s approach to tackling racist abuse towards these communities.  

The session will also examine the impact the Nationality and Borders Bill is likely to have on Northern Ireland, including for migrants, refugees and those seeking asylum. 

This is the second session of the NI Affairs Committee’s inquiry into the experience of minority ethnic and migrant people in Northern Ireland. The first session examined the issues surrounding health outcomes and healthcare access hearing from those representing Irish Travellers, Syrian refugees, migrants and healthcare workers.  

Witnesses

Wednesday 15 September 

At 9.30am 

  • Cllr Lilian Seenoi-Barr, Director of Programmes, North West Migrants Forum 
  • Liz Griffith, Policy Officer, Law Centre NI and the Refugee and Asylum Forum
  • Ronnie Vellem, Secretary of the Northern Ireland Community of Refugees and Asylum Seekers (NICRAS).

At about 10.30am 

  • Andy George, President, National Black Police Association  
  • Sergeant Richard Williams, Chair, Ethnic Minority Police Association (NI) 

Further information

Image: David Smith/geograph (CC BY-SA 2.0)