Social Justice and the Lessons from the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry Report: 20 Years On

5:00pm - 7:00pm / Wednesday 8th May 2019 / Venue: Lesley Hearnshaw Lecture Theatre Eleanor Rathbone Building
Type: Lecture / Category: Department
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  • Suitable for: Public Lecture
  • Admission: Free
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Eleanor Rathbone Social Justice Public Lecture Series 2018-19

‘Social Justice and the Lessons from the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry Report: 20 Years On’

Dr Omar Khan

It is 20 years since the publication of the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry Report. The Inquiry – led by Sir William Macpherson - held 69 days of public hearings, heard 88 witnesses and considered thousands of pages of evidence. Its finding that ‘institutional racism’ played a part in the failed police investigation into Stephen’s murder and that it existed not only in the police but in ‘other institutions countrywide’, reverberated everywhere. In addition to making vitally important recommendations on policing, the Report invoked a wider examination of how key public institutions could better respond to racism. But two decades on and we continue to misunderstand what racism is and precisely what effects it imposes and we have failed to implement policies that address it effectively. By re-considering the Report’s analysis and recommendations the lecture will chart a better response to racism over the next 20 years.

Dr Omar Khan is the Director of the Runnymede Trust, the leading independent race equality think tank in the UK. The Trust is committed to the principle that democratic dialogue, policy and practice should all be based on reliable evidence drawn from rigorous research and thorough analysis. Omar has authored or co-authored numerous authoritative reports for Runnymede on a range of topics including multiculturalism, integration, socio-economic disadvantage and positive action. He has also provided expert evidence to a range of high-level bodies including the United Nations in Geneva, the European Parliament in Strasbourg and the US Government on Capitol Hill, Washington DC. Omar obtained a PhD in Political Theory from the University of Oxford, a Masters Degree in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Masters Degree in South Asian Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.