Cameron’s bribe for black entrepreneurs ignores real issues

Will black entrepreneurs fall for Cameron's bribe?

Conservative leader David Cameron stepped up the general election political battle when he announced that under his government black entrepreneurs would receive more government support to tackle barriers which has spurned their success and ambitions yet he fails to acknowledge that many black people turn to self employment because of racism in the employment market.

Conservative leader David Cameron will deliver a mouth watering speech to black leaders in London tonight.

In this speech the Tory leader will outline the obstacles facing black entrepreneurs such as the fact that they are four times more likely to be turned down for a bank loan than white business owners.

According to a report today on the Guardian website by Nicolas Watts, black people want to start a business more than any other group. Thirty-one per cent of blacks wanted to start a business compared to 9 per cent of whites and Cameron has seen a way in which to win the votes of this group.

Cameron has vowed to tackle inequalities in Black Britain by giving people a start in business yet there are two problems with this tactic.

One, it is a tactic which favours one particular group in the black community rather than everyone as a whole and two, it ignores research which suggests that many black people turn to self employment because of racism in the employment market.

A research paper by Ken Clarke from the University of Manchester and Stephen Drinkwater from the University of Surrey suggests in 2006, titled “Changing Patterns of Ethnic Minority Self-Employment in Britain: Evidence from Census Microdata”, states that “…labour market discrimination leads to higher self-employment for discriminated-against groups.”

From this perspective the real issues for the next government is dealing with discrimination against black and minority ethnic workers in the labour market.

Cameron is bribing black entrepreneurs to vote for the Conservative Party and ignore the underlying problems which has led some of them to pursue other avenues in the first place , which is an employment market which continues to discriminate against black workers.

Operation Black Vote (OBV) is an organisation which has focused exclusively on the Black democratic deficit in the UK and increasing the number of black voters and MPs since 1996.

Research carried out by OBV suggests that in areas such as Kingston and Surbiton, Milton Keynes NE, Harrow West, Northampton South, Enfield Southgate and Bradford West the BME population in these areas could be decisive for political parties to win and Cameron has obviously picked up on this potential.

What black entrepreneurs must not do is fall for the bribe and look after their narrow interests. Instead they can use their new found political clout as a bargaining tool to win two massive political favours from the next government. One, the removal of discriminative barriers towards black entrepreneurs for finance and two, the removal of discriminative barriers in the employment market. This includes including private companies in the employment Race Relations Act.

This an opportunity for black leaders to bargain with Cameron for greater racial equality in Britain, let us see what comes of this.

For further research:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/mar/17/david-cameron-support-black-entrepreneurs

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/mar/17/black-britain-unemployment-conservatives

http://wpeg.group.shef.ac.uk/documents/kenclark.pdf


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