The state has an obligation under the Race Relations Act to ensure that different ethnic groups are not disproportionately disadvantaged by government policies. This requirement has been invoked by Hounslow Race Equality Council and Friends of the Earth in order to challenge the proposed third runway at Heathrow:
“The Government has been forced to review the impact of Heathrow airport expansion on local ethnic minority communities following a legal challenge from Hounslow Race Equality Council (Hounslow REC), represented by Friends of the Earth’s Rights and Justice Centre.
The Government denied that changes in their proposals for expanding the airport were likely to result in a disproportionate noise burden on the large ethnic minority population in the area  – but was forced to rethink when Hounslow REC sought legal action and lodged judicial review proceedings at the High Court .
Hounslow REC argued that proposals to allow easterly departures off the northern runway over the heavily populated area of Cranford would cause noise pollution affecting mostly ethnic minority communities , and that work was needed to assess the effect of lowering planes on the southern flight path to the airport.”
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