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Graphic says "No More Hate" with a hand emoji indicating 'stop'.

Remembering Michael Causer and Anthony Walker

by Alison Cornmell

This Saturday (30 July) marks 17 years since the death of Anthony Walker – a young man, whose life was cut tragically short due to an unprovoked and racially motivated attack in Huyton. On Tuesday 2 August it is 14 years since Michael Causer, a member of the LGBT+ community, died following an unprovoked attack on 25 July 2008 in Huyton.

On the anniversaries of their deaths, Knowsley Council and its partners continue in their collective commitment to say ‘No More’ to hate.

Cllr Shelley Powell, Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhoods said:

“I still feel great sadness at the loss of these young men who had the potential to achieve so much but whose lives were cut tragically short. Hatred and violence can have such a devastating impact on the lives of so many people.

“Key to us tackling hate crime and addressing inequality is implementing fundamental change, encouraging discussion and working with partners. We are working with partners across Knowsley and the wider city region to share specialist knowledge to create safer and more inclusive communities.”

Priorities for Knowsley Council and partners include:

Race equality declaration
At the start of this year councillors backed an ambitious commitment to promote race equality in Knowsley.

In January 2022, members agreed a Notice of Motion – proposed by Cllr Jayne Aston – introducing a Race Equality Declaration of Intent which outlines an ambitious programme of activity and targets for the council as an employer, a community leader, and a partner within the City Region.

The declaration states the Council’s commitment to support an inclusive and safe workplace environment for Black and Minority, Ethnic (BME) staff, provide mandatory race equality training programme for all staff and an effective response to any incidents of racial discrimination and/or racial harassment.

The declaration also commits to improving how the council communicates and engages with BME residents, organisations and businesses, as well as developing more responsive, accessible, safe, and inclusive services that meet the needs of our increasingly diverse community.

Stronger Communities Strategy
The Council is currently developing a new Stronger Communities Strategy with the aim of further empowering Knowsley’s communities and addressing long-term inequalities through early intervention and enabling more community capacity and support.

World Reimagined
This summer Knowsley is involved in the public art project The World Reimagined – which will see a trail of globe sculptures appear across the Liverpool City Region from August 2022.

The World Reimagined is a ground-breaking, national art education project that aims to transform how we understand the Transatlantic Trade in Enslaved Africans and its impact on all of us. The project will see trails of Globe sculptures in cities across the UK. Read more about The World Reimagined here

Celebrating Pride
This Saturday 30 July Knowsley Council will light the Graystone Bridge in rainbow colours to celebrate and mark Liverpool Pride. This year’s event will be in person and people can find out details of the event here www.lcrpride.co.uk/

Partners address hate crime
Alongside raising awareness and encouraging communities to support inclusivity and diversity, the Council also convenes regular monitoring meetings with a specific focus on hate crime and ways to identify and target issues. Partners including the Council, Merseyside Police, local housing associations, The Anthony Walker Foundation and others come together regularly to share their knowledge and experience, identify or tackle specific issues and develop long term strategies and plans to address key areas of concern.

No More
In 2020, Knowsley Council launched the No More campaign which seeks to use its power as a local authority to encourage positive change in Knowsley for its residents and communities. The campaign aims to raise understanding of what hate crime is and where and how it can be reported.

SPEAK OUT! STOP HATE
Since his untimely death, the Walker family set up The Anthony Walker Foundation which tackles racism, supports those experiencing hate crime and builds safer, stronger, thriving places to live.

Last year, the Foundation established the Speak Out! Stop Hate campaign and reporting tool: https://anthonywalkerfoundation.com/speak-out-stop-hate/ here people can report any incident of hate crime they experience or witness.

How Can I Report Hate Crime? 
If it feels like the situation could get heated or violent very soon or if someone is in immediate danger call 999 straight away.

You can report hate crime online or call 101.

If you’d prefer to speak to a police officer in person visit a police station, Merseyside Police can provide a safe and comfortable environment at any of their police stations.

Alternatively, if you don’t feel comfortable reporting it to the police you can report it to Stop Hate UK 0800 138 1625.

Reports can also be made and safety can be found at Merseyside Fire and Rescue stations across Knowsley and Merseyside.