South Gloucestershire agreed an urgent motion at Council (Weds 29th June), condemning hate crimes in the wake of the vote to leave the UK.
Proposing the motion, Cllr Claire Young said: “Since the EU referendum result was announced on Friday, there has been a worrying rise in racially motivated offences across the country. In Cambridgeshire, police are investigating after hateful notes were pushed through the letter boxes of Polish people. A young Bristol mum has been spat on and abused. And I could quote many other examples of people who look or sound as if they may be from another country being told variations of ‘go home, we voted you out’.”
Cllr Young went on to highlight the concerns of a Hungarian man living in Yate, while other councillors spoke of incidents that had been raised with them.
Cllr Young added:
“We all need to make it clear that racism is not acceptable and that we welcome all.It is therefore disappointing that prominent Leave campaigner and local resident Arron Banks, when asked on twitter, "Do you deplore the attack on the Polish Social and Cultural Association earlier today. Or does it please you?"
"What's a psok cultural centre when it's at home. Pack in the guardian connected outrage.. Yawn .."
Let's make it clear we all, whether Leave or Remain campaigners, deplore racist abuse and attacks and keep South Gloucestershire a cohesive, safe community for all.”
The motion passed unanimously, and read:
Council notes with regret reports of racist incidents around the UK since the referendum vote to leave the European Union, including UK citizens being told to "go home".
Council believes that everyone living in South Gloucestershire is welcome here, in their home, regardless of their ethnic background, religion, or national origin.
Council is disappointed to learn that incidents have been reported in South Gloucestershire.
Council reaffirms its commitment to fighting all forms of racism and hatred, and calls for communities across South Gloucestershire to come together as we build a new direction for the UK.