Speaking this morning at the Labour Party’s Eastern regional conference in Ipswich, Labour's Deputy Leader and Party Chair Harriet Harman said:
"Trevor Phillips is a great leader of the Equality Commission – a great institution set up by a Labour government. But what he was reported as saying in the Times was simply wrong, and I was glad he has made clear that it's Labour which has ‘led the way’ in improving numbers of black and minority ethnic MPs in Britain.
“Barack Obama’s campaign challenged pessimism and defied defeatism and said “yes we can” – and he made this happen. That’s what we need to do here as well. We want to challenge the pessimism and defeatism which says Black and Asian people can’t succeed in this country.
“Labour is the party that has always championed equality. It was Labour MPs who broke down the barriers, starting with Bernie Grant, Keith Vaz and Diane Abbott and now with 6 times more Black and Asian MPs than all the other parties put together. But our pledge is full representation which means 4 times more Black and Asian MPs.”