Theresa May will today demand an end to racial discrimination in everyday life.
The Prime Minister will publish an analysis showing huge disparities in employment rates and school attainment between white people and those from ethnic minority backgrounds.
She will launch a massive database – the first of its kind in the world – covering 130 areas of life across health, education, employment and criminal justice, all broken down by race.
Mrs May has ordered a review of school exclusions after the audit revealed that some black children were three times as likely to be excluded or suspended as white British ones.
Theresa May meets sixth formers and primary aged pupils at the Dunraven School, Lambeth, earlier today
The Prime Minister was met by an enthusiastic greeting of high-fives and handshakes as she made her way along the school fence
The figures show that poorer white children tend to do worse in tests at junior schools, and that black people are less likely to own a house and more likely to be found guilty in court.
The Conservative leader will use the statistics to challenge society to ‘explain or change’ disparities in how people from different backgrounds are treated.
She will tell Whitehall, businesses, police and other institutions that they have ‘nowhere to hide’ and must help ensure race is never a barrier to people achieving their goals in life.
On a visit to a school in South London, Mrs May told sixth form students: ‘What I hope this audit will bring is a change in attitude so that everyone is treated equally, no matter what their background, and this is never a barrier to getting on in life.
‘By bringing this information together in one place for the first time it will shine a light on the issues we are facing. We must now work together as a society to find solutions.’
Mrs May will launch the new Ethnicity Facts and Figures website today, saying she hopes it will become an ‘essential resource in the battle to defeat ethnic injustice’.
Mrs May told sixth form students: ‘What I hope this audit will bring is a change in attitude so that everyone is treated equally’
The Prime Minister will publish an analysis showing huge disparities in employment rates and school attainment
Among the findings were that the 8 per cent unemployment rate for black, Asian and minority ethnic people is nearly double that of white British adults.
Mrs May will say: ‘People who have lived with discrimination don’t need a government audit to make them aware of the scale of the challenge.
‘But this audit means that for society as a whole – for Government, for our public services – there is nowhere to hide.
‘These issues are now out in the open. And the message is very simple: if these disparities cannot be explained then they must be changed.
‘Britain has come a long way in my lifetime in spreading equality and opportunity. But the data we are publishing today will provide the definitive evidence of how far we must still go in order to truly build a country that works for everyone.’
Mrs May with David Bowle, the Principle of Dunraven School during her visit to the south London school
As part of the Government’s response, the Department for Work and Pensions will target 20 ‘hotspots’ where ethnic minority people are more likely to be unemployed.
The Ministry of Justice will put in place recommendations from the recent Lammy Review, including performance indicators for prisons to assess how prisoners of different races are treated.
The ministry will also be made to adopt an ‘explain or change approach’ to ethnic disparities and publish all data held on ethnicity by default. Prison chiefs will be urged to improve the recruitment, retention and progress of minority s
In education, an external review will look at cases of children excluded from school, with a focus on ethnic groups disproportionately likely to be suspended or expelled.
In 2015/16, Irish traveller pupils were the most likely to be excluded, with a rate of 0.49 per cent. They were followed by gipsy and Roma children (0.33 per cent). Black Caribbean pupils – at a rate of 0.29 per cent – were permanently excluded at three times the rate of white British pupils.