Monday 26 October 2015

The Dreams of Mo and the Race for Opportunity Awards

Guest blog by Nan Tewari

Brent acceptance speech for race equality award

I'd like to thank Business in the Community for organising the Race for Opportunity Awards 2015.

[I'm absolutely ecstatic at winning this award which will definitely be one in the eye for our detractors most notably Martin Francis and Philip Grant who have nothing better to do than ask questions and expect answers.]

Brent Council has taken action to create a workplace culture which puts race equality at the heart of our activity.........

[Hope you miserable lot at Watford Employment Tribunal are sitting up and taking notice of this vindication.]

........and has demonstrated a strong commitment to ensuring that ethnic minority talent has equal opportunity to progress at every level.

[Ethnic minorities in Brent have an unfortunate habit of getting sacked before they can progress up the ladder and if they manage to survive there are no senior jobs left to progress into anyway – it's nothing personal.]

I couldn't close without paying tribute to the outstanding team at Brent Council that made this award possible – Cara Davani, Christine Gilbert, Andrew Potts.

[Thank heavens The Cronies have gone.  The constant public reminders of race discrimination, victimisation, bullying, Oyster-card misuse, appointing staff without interviews, blah de blah de blah, were doing my head in.]

Expectant hush falls...............

..........and the winner of the Race for Opportunity Awards 2015 in the Transparency, Monitoring and Action category is.................................

Teach First.

And so it came to pass that on October 6th the Brent dream of Bringing Home the Race Equality Trophy lay in tatters.

It was Wembley Matters, intrepid organ beloved of people who expect the odd display of integrity and published by that award-winning cultivator of the phaseolus coccineus (runner-bean grower to you and me) Martin Francis, that broke the astonishing news on 1 July.  Brent Council under the guidance of its preceptress Cara Davani, former Director of HR, had nominated itself for an equality award. LINK

You would have thought that in the face of the Watford Employment Tribunal finding against Brent Council and its HR Director Cara Davani, of victimisation, race discrimination and unfair dismissal against a member of staff, the Council might have not have wanted to risk opening itself up to even further public opprobrium and ridicule but you'd have been wrong.

You may have been forgiven for thinking that the Council's best policy might possibly have encompassed maintaining a judicious low profile for a respectful period until the storm had passed but you'd have been under a misapprehension.

In fact, in its desperate thrashing about to rescue itself from the PR disaster-hood that had dogged the Davani dominion over the Council, the strategy of applying for the equality award emerged as a seemingly heaven-sent opportunity to rubbish the aspersions so unjustly cast upon the Council's and Davani's pristine reputations by the Watford ET and the local plebs.

Public outrage was expressed in no uncertain terms at the time the news broke here of the award entry.  There now appears to a most curious reluctance on the part of the Council to take to its intranet once again to announce the result of the awards dinner on October 6th.

And in other news, congratulations to Teach First who I trust will prove a deserving winner of the Race for Opportunity Awards 2015 in the Transparency, Monitoring and Action category.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bare face cheek. Good that common sense prevailed.