Boris Johnson’s nasty rhetoric has unleashed a tidal wave of racial abuse and attacks

Jack Dromey MP today accused Boris Johnson of fuelling hate attacks and says that Birmingham will not tolerate hate crime

Examples of race-fuelled attacks reported to the MP since Thursday’s referendum include:

Longbridge Station

  • A bystander described an altercation between the conductor and a passenger. He said that the train was ready to pull off when a middle aged white man started addressing the conductor – who appeared to be from a minority background. The man told the conductor to open the doors- a request that the conductor refused as the train was late.
  • The man then said “We have left Europe and we will be making the rules now” and that the conductor “should watch his step in future”.

Erdington and Kingstanding

Polish residents of Erdington and neighbouring constituencies have described incidents of anti-Polish abuse since Thursday:

  • One said that she has lived in the UK since 1998 and definitely feels a change has taken place, telling of how she was called “scum” by a neighbour on her road.
  • Another was pushed out of the way at a supermarket in Harborne and told to be quiet when they protested and that “they would be out of the UK soon”.
  • Another described receiving abuse from youngsters as they shouted “go home soon” at her.


Jack Dromey, Member of Parliament for Birmingham Erdington and Labour’s Shadow Police Minister, said:

“I am seeing profoundly disturbing evidence of a wave of racial abuse and attacks because of how immigration was handled in the Referendum campaign. The simple truth is that Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage played the race and immigration card because the Brexit campaign could not win the economic and security arguments.

“In my lifetime Enoch Powell spoke of the rivers of blood but Ted Heath sacked him. The National Front and British National Party were obnoxious but marginal. UKIP were shameful but never achieved a significant breakthrough. Now we have mainstream politicians injecting xenophobia into the mainstream of British politics. The Vote Leave camp’s assertions about a million Turkish people flooding the country is just one example. Another is Nigel Farage and his chilling interview where he talks about violence on the streets being the “next step” if immigration is not controlled.

“It would be fundamentally wrong to suggest for one minute that all those who voted Brexit are racists. People who voted to leave did so for a number of different reasons. Millions of working class people feel left behind by Tory austerity, and it is true that there are sometimes real problems associated with the undercutting of wages and availability of decent quality housing. The voice of people affected by these issues must be heard, but so too should we assert the best of British values.

“We will never allow Britain to be broken by hate and fear. We will never allow terror to stalk the streets of Birmingham, and we will never allow poisonous and divisive politics to take over, in our city and beyond.”