A betrayal of Asian women


by Sunny
27th March, 2008 at 6:20 pm    

The decision to chop funding to Southall Black Sisters, which I’ve documented here a lot, is a betrayal on two fronts.

Firstly, it is a betrayal by the Conservative party. David Cameron has relentlessly been talking about taking more action on forced marriages and ‘honour’ crimes. And yet when organisations on the front-line of challenging these problems are having their funding withdrawn, by Tory Councils, then he’s strangely silent. Was it all just positioning and marketing? The Tory council says all they’re doing is ensuring that the money goes to groups that can cater for all women. But Cameron very well knows you need specialist organisations – after all he’s been promoting and touring with Karma Nirvana’s Jasvinder Sanghera. But on this issue there’s not been a peep from him. I wonder why? Say one thing and do another?

The second act of betrayal is from the group Refuge itself. Refuge is a multi-million pound organisation that does good work but it wants the money that usually went to SBS. This is despite they fact they know that SBS do more specialist work they don’t have the skills to deliver themselves.

SBS have written to Refuge asking them to back out from applying for that funding, to force Ealing Council to reconsider. But they’ve refused to do so because they want to build up their own empire and despite the fact that its a drop in the ocean for the nearly £10m a year they get in funding. Its disgraceful. The SBS problem has been covered across many blogs and pushed by a lot of white feminist bloggers. They have completely shattered the myth, perpetuated by many, that white feminists don’t care for brown feminists. So Refuge’s unwillingness to stand in solidarity with SBS is also a betrayal. They should be ashamed.

SBS are holding another protest in front of Ealing Council on 1st April. That is also the day the decision on whether funding gets cut will be made. I’ll be there again.


              Post to del.icio.us


Filed in: Current affairs






19 Comments below   |  

Reactions: Twitter, blogs


  1. Rumbold — on 27th March, 2008 at 7:51 pm  

    Even though he shouldn’t force Ealing Council to change their decision, Cameron could still speak out against this- it makes a mockery of his recent pronouncments on such issues. I increasingly regard the Conservatives as damaged goods: they don’t speak out on issues like this, back most suggestions that enhance the power of the state, and fail to talk about reducing the state’s power/spending, or directing it where it is needed (in cases like this).

    Refuge’s stance is a bit more understandable, as it is a cutthroat scramble for funds out there, especially thanks to the Olympics.

  2. Muhamad [peace be upon me] — on 27th March, 2008 at 7:55 pm  

    Never commented on this before.
    If I still lived in London I’d be there.

    David Cameron and those of his ilk are lying hypocrites!

  3. Ms_Xtreme — on 27th March, 2008 at 8:03 pm  

    They have completely shattered the myth, perpetuated by many, that white feminists don’t care for brown feminists.

    And you see nothing wrong with pushing the feminist movement? I’d be more willing to support SBS if they were fair in their practices. Unfortunately – they’re not.

  4. Leon — on 27th March, 2008 at 8:04 pm  

    This from Refuge isn’t really that surprising; within the third sector’s smaller orgs there’s long been talk about how the sector is starting to look like the private sector. Bigger campaigns/orgs sucking up smaller ones funding streams, huge charities like Oxfam basically acting the way supermarkets do with the local corner shop etc…

    It’s only going to get worse and with the governments change in ‘cohesion’ priorities and the Tories apparent duplicity you can guess which communities will be the hardest hit by this.

  5. marvin — on 27th March, 2008 at 8:08 pm  

    Dang, soon as Fitna gets released HP sauce goes down….

    Watch it here

  6. koppakabana — on 27th March, 2008 at 9:09 pm  

    Sunny, can you direct us to the white feminist bloggers pushing for SBS? Thanks!

  7. Sunny — on 27th March, 2008 at 10:54 pm  
  8. Sunny — on 27th March, 2008 at 10:54 pm  

    Oh and the F-Word blog did lots of posts on SBS too.

    http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/

  9. billericaydicky — on 28th March, 2008 at 8:56 am  

    The comments about big charities being little more than businesses is spot on but there is another agenda at work in Ealing.

    I hope most people will have heard of Blair Peach he was killed in Southall in 1979 protesting against the National Front marching. A policeman hit him over the head and he died in hospital. The then Labour council named a school after him but when the Tories got in they changed to something else. Labour changed it back again and it still bears his name.

    When a friend of mine got a plaque to him erected on the school he taught in in East London Ealing council were invited to the unveiling but said it wasn’t an Ealing issue and never turned up.

  10. Letters From A Tory — on 28th March, 2008 at 9:28 am  

    Charitable organisations competing for funding is a fact of life and it’s often very hard to balance entirely different needs when it comes to the same pot of funding.

    http://lettersfromatory.wordpress.com

  11. sarah — on 28th March, 2008 at 11:46 am  

    As always Sunny, thanks for your support!

  12. Aaminah — on 28th March, 2008 at 12:45 pm  

    Thanks for linking to my post Sunny, and for all these resources. But I feel compelled to clarify, since Koppa was asking specifically for white bloggers who were writing in support of SBS, I am not white.

  13. Leon — on 28th March, 2008 at 1:31 pm  

    I hope most people will have heard of Blair Peach he was killed in Southall in 1979 protesting against the National Front marching.

    Yep some of us have.

  14. Leon — on 28th March, 2008 at 1:35 pm  

    Charitable organisations competing for funding is a fact of life and it’s often very hard to balance entirely different needs when it comes to the same pot of funding.

    It’s nowhere near as innocent or mundane as you’re suggesting.

    It is very much like the ‘free’ market these days with bigger organisations being able to muscle in on smaller ones work.

  15. Aaminah — on 28th March, 2008 at 1:59 pm  

    “It’s nowhere near as innocent or mundane as you’re suggesting.

    It is very much like the ‘free’ market these days with bigger organisations being able to muscle in on smaller ones work.”

    I agree Leon. I know the dynamics and methods are different in different countries, but I would highly recommend that anyone who is interested in how funding works and how it doesn’t work for small organizations to rely on the standard model, to check out the INCITE! book “The Revolution Will Not Be Funded”. Relying exclusively on traditional funding streams is a huge part of why small organizations have so many problems. There are restrictions on how they use the funding and funders don’t want to pay the day-to-day (operational) bills that are necessary to keep the organization going. And yes, bigger organizations have greater access to bigger funders and the means to push smaller organizations out of competition.

  16. fiz — on 28th March, 2008 at 3:22 pm  

    I agree with Leon. Many smaller NGO’s are getting squeezed out the vol, sector. They can either sign up to a wider agenda (consortia, etc)- this however stops them doing what they do best- working without the red-tape. However, many of the smaller ngo’s have great difficulty in evidencing their outcomes hence funding streams tail off to busineses that can account their expenditure

  17. Sunny — on 28th March, 2008 at 3:32 pm  

    And yes, bigger organizations have greater access to bigger funders and the means to push smaller organizations out of competition.

    yup, this is what’s happening here – Refuge have the political contacts and the mainstream ‘acceptance’, so SBS get driven out.

    But I feel compelled to clarify, since Koppa was asking specifically for white bloggers who were writing in support of SBS, I am not white.

    Don’t worry, we’re not the discriminating kind :)

    ms_extreme: And you see nothing wrong with pushing the feminist movement?

    No, why?

  18. Aaminah — on 28th March, 2008 at 5:09 pm  

    “Don’t worry, we’re not the discriminating kind”

    LOL, I can tell not, Sunny. But I assumed that Koppa was trying to find out if white bloggers even have this on their radar to begin with. My name in there beefs up the numbers, so to speak, and gives an inaccurate accounting, if you know what I mean. :)

  19. NONO — on 29th March, 2008 at 7:42 pm  

    I suggest those of you defending Refuge pay a little visit to their headquarters. Plush surroundings with a leggy dolly bird on reception (I gather she’s the CEO’s daughter), the offices are rumoured to be a donation from an unnamed source. Based in the heart of London, this national organisation is not in need of council funding, they have money thrown at them.

    I am absolutely disgusted.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Pickled Politics © Copyright 2005 - 2010. All rights reserved. Terms and conditions.
With the help of PHP and Wordpress.