Black Lives Matter protest in Brighton

A Black Lives Matter protest took place in Brighton today (July 11).

Black Lives Matter protest in Brighton SUS-201107-143039001
Black Lives Matter protest in Brighton SUS-201107-143039001

Campaigners gathered at Brighton Pier at midday and marched through the city centre to protest against racism.

Organisers said the event was an effort to make sure the Black Lives Matter movement continues, following the wave of protests in June in response to the death of George Floyd.

The march was peaceful, however at one point an argument broke out when a man started shouting at the crowd near The Level.

Black Lives Matter protest in Brighton SUS-201107-143024001

James Butler, who witnessed the incident, said: “It was a shame that the march, which was otherwise peaceful, was disrupted in this way.

“Protest is a right of every citizen and it was amazing to see the overwhelming majority supporting the march. One individual’s actions will not overshadow that.”

In a banner, Brighton Black Lives Matter explained their reasons behind the protest. It said: “The UK is not innocent.

“Racism is part of the British system and institutions. Our country and city needs to acknowledge the racism that perpetuates and we demand equity.”

Among the group’s demands is that Brighton council investigates Sussex Police’s use of stop and search, conducts an inquiry into the Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME) wage gap, and reinstates funding to the BAME Young People’s project.

On criticism of protesting during a pandemic, Brighton Black Lives Matter said: “The government is happy to send us back to work and risk our lives for profit to protect the economy.

“We believe that marching and protesting for the rights of black people and people of colour is a more important cause.

“Following our previous march, we understand there has not been a spike of cases in our city and we thank everyone who previously attended for taking appropriate precautions.”

Roads into the city centre were temporarily closed today between 12pm and 3pm as the march took place.

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