How the Queen 'cares passionately' about the Black Lives Matter movement

·2-min read
Photo credit: Chris Jackson - Getty Images
Photo credit: Chris Jackson - Getty Images

A Royal representative has revealed the Queen and the Royal Family are supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement.

In an interview with Channel 4, Sir Ken Olisa, the first black Lord-Lieutenant for London, opened up about the conversations he's had with the Royals surrounding race following the murder of George Floyd in the US last year.

Speaking about whether the palace supports BLM, Sir Ken said: "The answer is easily yes."

He continued, "I have discussed with the Royal household this whole issue of race particularly in the last 12 months since the George Floyd incident."

"They [the Royals] care passionately about making this one nation bound by the same values," Sir Ken added, "It’s a hot conversation topic. The question is what more can we do to bind society to remove these barriers."

Photo credit: NurPhoto - Getty Images
Photo credit: NurPhoto - Getty Images

Buckingham Palace itself has admitted it "must do more" when it comes to diversity. Figures show the Palace's current percentage of ethnic minority employees "is not where it would like to be," at just 8.5%. The Palace has set a target to increase this number to 10% in 2022, along with changes to the household's Diversity Strategy which aim to improve inclusivity.

Channel 4's Black To Front documentary, which has been produced by an all-black presenting and reporting team, also sees Sir Ken discuss how the Queen handled the Grenfell fire. He explained The Queen had sought advice from him over whether to visit the tower in the aftermath of the tragedy which killed 72 people in London in 2017.

Photo credit: Channel 4
Photo credit: Channel 4

Sir Ken revealed that although he advised the Palace to attend, he had reservations over how the Royals would be received at the site. "I remember thinking as it all happened, it was quite scary," he said, "we didn’t know whether she would be booed or have things thrown at her etc and when she got out of the car all these people applauded."

Sir Ken's comments follow allegations of racism within the Royal Family made by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in their interview with Oprah.

In their interview, which aired earlier this year, the Duchess of Sussex claimed an unnamed royal had raised concerns with Harry about how dark their son Archie's skin tone might be. The couple denied the comments had been made by the Queen or the Duke of Edinburgh.

Photo credit: Handout - Getty Images
Photo credit: Handout - Getty Images

Harry and Meghan also said they thought racism could be the reason why Archie was denied security protection, or the title of prince. In response, the Queen released a statement confirming that the allegations made would be handled privately as a family.

Prince Harry's brother, the Duke of Cambridge also commented on the issues raised in the Oprah interview, saying "we're very much not a racist family."

Black To Front will air on Channel 4 tonight at 7pm.


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