A teachers’ union, the NASUWT, which represents a quarter of a million
teachers in Britain, has threatened legal action to bar British National party (BNP)
councillors from serving as school governors.
The union says a primary school in the Midlands plans to hold an election
this term that could see a BNP councillor become vice-chair of its governing
If a BNP councillor is elected to a school governing body, the NASUWT will
seek judicial review of the appointment under the Race Relations Act.
Under section 71 of the Act, governing bodies must carry out their duties
with “due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful racial discrimination and
promote equality of opportunity and good relations between persons of different
NASUWT general secretary Chris Keates said:
“The BNP stands on a ticket that breaches the Race Relations Act. We believe
that the values and ethos of public service are directly opposite to the views
of BNP members.
“There is an inescapable logic: how can people who hold BNP views hold a
public service like being a member of a school governing body without
compromising the school?
“Fascists have used the democratic process to get in control before. We
shouldn’t be standing by and letting this happen.
“If we hear of a case of a BNP councillor elected to a governing body, and
this is not overturned by a council, we will take this to judicial review.
“The BNP stands for racial intolerance and community fragmentation. All
right-minded people would want to make a stand on this.”
The government is also considering a ban on BNP members working as teachers in schools.
Police and prison officers are already banned from being members of the BNP. But, currently there is no ban on teachers being members of the party.
** Additional Information & Advice **
You can obtain further information about the Race Relations Act and race
discrimination on the Equality and
Human Rights Commission website.
Depending on the circumstances of your case, however, it may be better to speak with a solicitor. You can be matched with a
solicitor in your area for free via solicitor matching services, which can
also help you to understand the best course of action for your situation and
whether you are ready to hire a solicitor.
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