Skip to main content
Close Menu Open Menu

Victoria Hills: Marking the start of Black History Month

Today marks the beginning of Black History Month 2022 giving us a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the myriad of contributions Black people have made to our country and understand some of the struggles that they have had to face. Reflecting and learning from this history propels us forward, inspiring us to keep striving to make sure that we are a truly inclusive society.

Planning sits at the intersection between communities and local government decision making and has a critical part to play in building this society. We know that Asian and Black households and those in the ‘Other’ ethnic group are more likely to be poor and in persistent poverty. We also know that Black Britons, particularly those of African heritage are less likely to own they own homes and Black Britons are more likely to be in social housing.

In the UK people from a Black or Asian communities are more at risk from air pollution and much more likely to live in neighbourhoods at risk from heatwaves with 28% being the average proportion of these communities in high-risk neighbourhoods compared with a national average of 9.5%.

Away from UK shores countries in the global south with predominately Black or Asian populations are ones most at risk from climate change and biodiversity loss.  

Planning and town planners are essential to finding solutions to these urgent issues but we need to make sure that the planning profession is as diverse and as representative of the communities that we work with and in. This is an area where we still have work to do.

So, during this Black History Month while we celebrate the achievement of some of our members not least Ransford Stewart who was awarded an MBE this year, we will also be reflecting with our partner the BAME Planners Network on what more we can do to make the planning profession more diverse and inclusive. We will also explore ways in which planning can help address inequalities in housing.

Black History Month allows us to acknowledge the past, reflect on the present and crucially to take action to build a better future; it’s a reminder that real CHANGE requires action not just words.

Back to top