Little Mix star Leigh-Anne Pinnock: Racism means I have to work 10 times harder

Danny Thompson
Contributor
Leigh-Anne Pinnock attends the "Top Boy" UK Premiere at Hackney Picturehouse on September 04, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Marsland/WireImage)

Leigh-Anne Pinnock has taken to social media to discuss the racism she faces as a member of Little Mix.

The singer says being “the black girl” in the group has meant she has had to work “ten times harder” as due to her colour her “talent alone isn’t enough”.

The 28-year-old was visibly upset as she opened up about the realisation she faced upon finding fame as a member of one of the world’s biggest girl groups.

Read more: Little Mix Star Leigh-Anne Pinnock Is Engaged to Soccer Star Andre Gray

The star told of being told warned of the issue by a music video producer after the band made their first single.

Talking in the video, Pinnock said: “There comes a point in every black human’s life, no matter how much money you have or what you have achieved, you realise racism does not exclude you.

“Nine years ago, after joining Little Mix, I had the biggest awakening of my life.

“When we were filming Wings, we worked with Frank Gatson. He said to me, ‘You are the black girl, you have to work ten times harder.’

“Never in my life had someone told me I would need to work harder because of my race.

“Later on, what Frank Gatson said made sense. I learned that being in the biggest girl band in the world came with its flaws and consequences.”

(L-R) Jade Thirlwall, Perrie Edwards, Jesy Nelson and Leigh-Anne Pinnock of Little Mix perform on stage during day 3 of Fusion Festival 2019 on September 01, 2019 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Joseph Okpako/WireImage)

Pinnock went to explain how she feels “the least favoured” by the groups fans.

She said: “My reality was feeling lonely while touring predominantly white countries. I sing to fans who don’t see me or hear me or cheer me on.

“My reality is feeling anxious before fan events and signings because I always feel like I’m the least favoured.

“My reality is constantly feeling like I have to work ten times harder and longer to mark my case in the group, because my talent alone isn’t enough.”

She added: “My reality is all the times I felt invisible within my group. Part of me is fully aware that my experience would have been ever harder to cope with had I been dark-skinned.

“Our reality is no matter how far you think you’ve come, racism exists. So let’s all continue to speak up on racism and keep this movement going. Thank you.”

Read more: Little Mix star Jade Thirlwall pens song for trans community

Her comments come off the back of world-wide protests after a video emerged of the death of a black man named George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis last month.

Floyd was being detained by officer Derek Chauvin, who knelt on the 46-year-old’s neck for over eight minutes.

Chauvin and three other officers have been arrested and charged.