White working class label ‘is too divisive’
BEING called white working class harms the chances of success for those it refers to, a leading think-tank has warned.
Research found the label separates them from those of other ethnicities with whom they have much more in common than the white middle and upper classes.
Lack of access to jobs and opportunities binds poor white, black and minority ethnic people together, the Runnymede Trust said in a report.
The call follows the growing perception that poor white boys are the worst- off group in the country. In her first speech as Prime Minister, Theresa May singled out white working class boys as in need of help. But those who worry about the white working class are guilty of ‘a desperate and empty form of ethnonationalism’, the trust said.
Director Dr Omar Khan said: ‘We do think the term “British white working class” does more harm than good. It’s counterproductive and divisive and doesn’t help the challenges these communities face. People identify themselves by being from England, for instance, or Portsmouth, or a Londoner – more than they do by race.
‘The white working class have more in common with poor ethnic-minority communities than they do with the white middle and upper classes.’
He added: ‘The label white working class isn’t helping the white working class because it is all talk and no action.
‘Rather than offer a desperate and empty form of ethno-nationalism, the best way to raise up this section of society is for central and local Government to adopt policies to benefit all working class communities.’
The attack on those who concentrate on the growing likelihood that white working class boys will do worse at school than any other group follows Mrs May’s remarks last July shortly after her appointment as PM.