It seems the only way to get on to a government race body is to deny racism even exists – especially if you’re a person of colour

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’s election victory may be a signal that Americans are ready to leave Donald Trump’s inflammatory “race war” politics behind, but it’s clear that in the UK, disunity and culture wars are still driving forces behind Boris Johnson’s government.

Last week a damning parliamentary report spoke of the shameful state of racism and human rights for Black people in the UK. Yet on the very same day the equalities minister, Liz Truss, appointed a supporter of the Home Office’s “hostile environment” to Britain’s race equality watchdog. David Goodhart, who denies that racism and Islamophobia are significant problems in the UK, was chosen as one of four new commissioners on the Equality and Human Rights Commission. He also believes white self-interest is not the same as racism, and that white people who want to reduce immigration to maintain population share have a legitimate group interest.

Dr Zubaida Haque is the former interim director of the Runnymede Trust

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