From: John Appleyard, Firthcliffe Parade, Liversedge.
AFTER the Second World War, citizens of the Commonwealth were invited to come and work in the UK to put Britain back on its feet.
For many, it seemed an opportunity of a new life, but for some they came across a colour bar for jobs and housing.
The Race Discrimination Act of 1965 only applied to public places such as pubs and hotels, it didn’t apply in the workplace.
As part of its Black History Month, BBC Radio Four dedicated a programme to Asquith Xavier who came to the UK from the West Indies and worked as a train guard, but when he sought a transfer to Euston railway station in 1966, he found that not only management, but the National Union of Railwaymen operated a colour bar.
In 1968 Labour’s Barbara Castle introduced the Race Relations Act which made it illegal to discriminate in the workplace and, thankfully, we have become a much more tolerant society.
When racism rears its ugly head, we should condemn it.