Sunday, June 05, 2016
Racist BBC turns down trainees because they are WHITE
Job applicants accused the BBC of racial discrimination after being turned down for roles because they are white.
The broadcaster advertised for two junior script writers on 12-month trainee schemes, one of which offered the opportunity to work on hospital drama Holby City in London.
But applicants were outraged when HR bosses replied to applications saying that they were only open to people from 'ethnic minority backgrounds'.
The corporation said the move was to address an 'under-representation of people from ethnic minority backgrounds in script editing roles'.
But one unsuccessful applicant accused them of flouting their own anti-discrimination rules by not granting him an interview based on his white ethnicity.
The 26-year-old, a media graduate, said: 'It's racial discrimination to disregard someone based on them being any race. 'It's just wrong and as far as I know it is illegal. Coming from the BBC, it's amazing.
'If you applied for a position and got a reply saying it was only open to white applicants you would quite rightly not be happy. This is exactly the same.'
The applicant, who chose to remain anonymous, added: 'Opportunities like this hardly ever come up. 'Of course there was no guarantee I would have got the job, but to be told I wasn't even allowed to apply because of the colour of my skin was appalling. I thought that became illegal years ago.
'Diversity is incredibly important and I am wholly against any form of discrimination - which is why I don't understand why the BBC think they can get away with this. 'The colour of someone's skin shouldn't even be questioned when applying for a role.'
The advert was for two full-time drama assistant script editors for the trainee scheme, with an annual 'allowance' of up to £25,205.
One role was based in London, working six months on Holby City, and six months in a development position.
The other was based in Cardiff or Glasgow, and the candidate would split their time between development and production.
It was listed on the BBC website's job section and said BBC Drama believed 'content should accurately reflect and be enjoyed by as many people as possible'.
The job description added that the two posts were 'exciting training and development opportunities for those from black, Asian and other ethnic minorities'.
But it didn't explicitly ban other people applying and added recruiters were looking for candidates 'passionate about getting into Drama script writing'.
When applicants applied for the role they received a generic email from an internal BBC recruiter explaining the ban on white candidates.
It said: 'The positions are only open to those from black, Asian and other ethnic minority backgrounds who are passionate about getting into Drama script editing.'
Figures reported this year show that 13.4 per cent of the BBC's workforce are from Black, Asian and other ethnic minorities.
That is more than the 13.1 per cent figure nationally from the 2011 Census which showed the proportion of the UK population from Black, Asian and other ethnic minorities.
The BBC said the scheme was a training opportunity, and allowed under the Equality Act, and claimed the advert made it clear it was for BAME candidates.
A spokesperson said: 'This is a training and development programme designed as a positive action scheme to address an identified under-representation of people from ethnic minority backgrounds in script editing roles at the BBC.'
Hard-Left hate mob taunts BBC's Laura as she tries to ask the Labour leader a question
The BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg was jeered by a hard-Left rabble yesterday as she tried to question Jeremy Corbyn.
Activists hissed and booed, while the Labour leader appeared to smirk before making a half-hearted attempt to quieten them.
Mr Corbyn has accused the BBC of trying to damage his leadership and some of his supporters have campaigned for the BBC to sack Miss Kuenssberg as its political editor.
But after she and other journalists were heckled, rising Labour star Wes Streeting warned his party was turning into a ‘cult’.
The Ilford North MP said that party events were in danger of becoming Donald Trump-style rallies, where journalists are routinely attacked for questioning the leader.
‘The Labour Party needs to hold a mirror up to itself and ask if we really want our events to resemble Trump rallies,’ he said.
‘We’re meant to be a political party providing effective opposition and an alternative government, not a cult.’
Fellow Labour MP Pat McFadden also criticised the behaviour of activists, saying: ‘The booing of a journalist for doing her job is wrong. It is not the culture we should have in the Labour Party.’
The heckling occurred when journalists were invited to ask Mr Corbyn questions after he made a speech on Europe at an event in London.
ITV’s Chris Ship asked the long-time Eurosceptic whether he had ‘campaigned as hard as you can to keep Britain in the EU’, following criticism of his lacklustre approach.
Mr Corbyn responded with a swipe at the Press, saying: ‘It’s partly down to the media and how they report what we do.’
The hand-picked audience of Labour activists cheered and applauded his answer, with some shouting angrily ‘It’s all your fault’ at journalists.
Miss Kuenssberg, who had posted a message on Twitter saying: ‘Corbyn can’t resist a pop at the media in answer to Chris Ship’, was then called to ask a question, prompting dozens of activists to hiss and boo.
Ironically, Mr Corbyn had used part of his address to vow to protect free speech. Afterwards Miss Kuenssberg tweeted: ‘Corbyn also mentioned importance of free Press in his speech… just sayin’.’
Former BBC Countryfile presenter Miriam O’Reilly wrote on Twitter: ‘Disgraceful how Jeremy Corbyn barely stifles a smirk when his supporters hiss Laura Kuenssberg.’
Last night a Labour source insisted Mr Corbyn did not support the hostile reception given to Miss Kuenssberg and other journalists, saying: ‘We do not condone any journalists being booed.’ Yesterday’s episode follows a campaign by some Corbyn supporters to have Miss Kuenssberg sacked for alleged anti-Labour bias.
A petition calling for her removal was signed by more than 35,000 last month, before it was taken down by campaign group 38 Degrees for attracting ‘sexist and hateful’ abuse towards the BBC journalist.
Another petition calling for her removal for ‘gross bias’ has now been launched.
Team Corbyn’s anger at Miss Kuenssberg erupted in January over her reporting of the Labour leader’s botched reshuffle. It came to a head after she reported on the party’s dismal performance in May’s local elections.
This week a documentary on Mr Corbyn showed him launching into a paranoid rant about the BBC’s coverage of his leadership.
‘The whole narrative... has been “Corbyn’s going to lose, Labour’s going to fail. Labour’s going to lose, Labour’s going to fail”,’ he stormed. ‘There is not one story on any election anywhere in the UK that the BBC will not spin into a problem for me.’
ISIS jihadis ARE driven by Islam and the world needs to accept that no matter how 'uncomfortable' the facts, says the Muslim man in charge of BBC Religion
The BBC's head of religion has said although it is 'uncomfortable' to accept, the ideology behind ISIS is based on Islamic doctrine.
Aaqil Ahmed, the first Muslim to hold the post, said it was untrue to suggest that ISIS had nothing to do with Islam, despite the fact that the majority of Muslims do not agree with the extremist group.
He was speaking at an event at Huddersfield University, when he was asked to explain the BBC's controversial policy on referring to the group as 'so-called Islamic State'.
Prime Minister David Cameron has been among those who have called for the corporation not to use the phrase when referring to the terror group operating in Iraq and Syria, saying Muslims would 'recoil' at the phrase being used to justify the 'perversion of a great religion'.
Mr Ahmed was asked at the event organised by Lapido, the centre for religious literacy in journalism, to defend the term by barrister Neil Addison on the grounds that he wouldn't have said 'so-called Huddersfield University'.
According to a report by Lapido, he responded by saying: 'I hear so many people say ISIS has nothing to do with Islam – of course it has.
'They are not preaching Judaism. It might be wrong but what they are saying is an ideology based on some form of Islamic doctrine. They are Muslims.
'That is a fact and we have to get our head around some very uncomfortable things. That is where the difficulty comes in for many journalists because the vast majority of Muslims won't agree with them [ISIS].'
Clarifying his comments, he told The Times that he had not been referring explicitly to the name of the group, but that 'it [was] a reflection of the complexity of how you describe them and the religious belief structure.'
The extremists are variously known as Islamic State, Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and Daesh, based the Arabic acronym for the group, which the terrorists consider to be offensive because it sounds similar to the word 'Dahes' meaning 'one who sows discord'.
Critics have warned that referring to 'Islamic State' legitimises the group's attempt to carve out parts of Iraq and Syria.
The BBC has used its preferred term to describe ISIS since 2014, when the group shortened its name from Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant to Islamic State.
However, the broadcaster qualifies the phrase by adding 'so-called' or 'self-styled', a reference to the extremists' claims of statehood rather than religious affiliation.
Last summer, Mr Cameron asked the BBC to drop the term, and criticised BBC presenter John Humphrys for referring to the group as Islamic State.
During an interview on BBC Radio 4's Today programme Mr Cameron referred to the group as 'ISIL'. 'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State because it's not an Islamic State; what it is is an appalling, barbarous regime,' Mr Cameron said.
'It is a perversion of the religion of Islam and many Muslims listening to this programme will recoil every time they hear the words "Islamic State".
'So-called' or Isil is better,' he added.
His request was backed by 120 MPs, including Boris Johnson, Keith Vaz and Alex Salmond, who wrote to Director General Lord Hall calling for the broadcaster to refer to the group as Daesh instead.
However, Lord Hall rejected the demand, saying to use Daesh would 'bias their coverage', risked giving the 'impression of support' for the group's opponents and 'would not preserve the BBC's impartiality'.
Former Channel 4 commissioning editor for religion and head of multicultural programming, Mr Ahmed was appointed as the BBC's head of religion and ethics in 2009, in what was seen as a radical departure from broadcasting tradition.
He began his broadcasting career at the BBC, primarily working for BBC Birmingham, and had also worked as a director for Here And Now, as well as a producer and director on a number of documentaries and news broadcasts.
Prior to his 2009 appointment, the then Archbishop of Canterbury was reported to have raised concerns over the prospect of a Muslim head of religious broadcasting, amid fears the BBC was reducing its religious output.
Previously, the post had been considered a job for a senior and respected cleric or lay churchgoer.
Last month, a report compiled by Mr Ahmed suggested that the BBC was too Christian in its output, and should consider scrapping some of its long-running programmes in favour of shows for Muslim, Hindu and Sikh audiences.
The report was created in consultation with non-Christians who expressed their belief that the BBC is disproportionate in its religious content, and that while there are plenty of shows that celebrate Christianity, there are too few for other faiths.
The recent white paper on the BBC's future ordered the broadcaster to offer more for ethnic minorities.
As it stands, religious programming across the BBC includes the likes of Songs of Praise, Sunday Morning Live and The Life of Muhammad on television. Moral Maze, Beyond Belief and Thought for the Day feature on radio.
Muslim critics have suggested that the BBC could televise Friday prayers, cover Eid or show children attending madrasahs to boost their Islamic serving.
Britain's family courts make a mockery of justice
It’s little wonder people are fearful of making abuse allegations
The UK Department for Education last week published research into rates of reporting child abuse. Feminists claimed that the fact that a third of those interviewed said they would not report suspicions of abuse amounted to ‘victim-blaming’.
But the Independent’s report last Friday mentioned an important finding, the significance of which has been lost on the survivor lobby. It said that the fear of having misread a situation, and of wrongly accusing someone, is the biggest factor that deters reporting.
A ruling from the Court of Appeal on 19 May in a family case shows just how skewed the system has become when dealing with accusations of abuse. The case is called Re E (a child) and it makes depressing reading.
The court quashed sensational findings of abuse made by a judge in the county court last January, against a father (‘Mr E’) and his 15-year-old son, ‘A’. Mr E was said to have assaulted a young girl, ‘D’, on scrubland from the age of four. He was said to have forced A to engage in sexual activity with D. He also orchestrated sexual activity between two other children, ‘B’ and ‘C’. In addition, the judge concluded that both Mr E and A had attempted anal penetration of a dog (a pit bull, described by the police as ‘not a docile dog’). The judge adopted the ‘cycle of abuse’ theory, finding that A was first abused and went on to abuse others.
Two families were involved in this saga: the E family, whose son, A, was aged 15; and the ‘F’ family, who have two boys and a girl: B (15), C (10) and D (8). In 2010, A had accused two uncles of abusing him, but his parents did not take any action after A said he did not want the police involved. In February 2015, A, who was out with the other children, was caught shoplifting. The police returned them to their parents only to find the parents all inebriated. So the children were taken into foster care.
The youngest, D, then accused A and his father of abusing her. This led to a rash of disclosures by A, B and C, also alleging abuse. Inexplicably, the foster carer then took the three younger children on holiday.
The first problem arose with the police interviews of the children, conducted after they returned from holiday. Interviews of complainants in sex cases are called ‘achieving best evidence’ (ABE) interviews. The idea is that the interviewee sits in a comfy chair, and the interviewer establishes a ‘rapport’ with him/her by discussing neutral, non-relevant topics and by trying to understand if the interviewee understands the difference between truth and lies. These interviews are recorded.
However, in this case, the introductory phase was not recorded. It was therefore unclear what the children were told about the ‘ground rules’. Next, the interview of D (the youngest) contained leading questions, such as introducing the names of alleged abusers into the narrative. D made no allegations. Then D left the room for an hour. Mysteriously, as soon as she came back, she started making allegations. It appears she spoke with her foster carer, who claimed that all she said to D was, ‘You need to say all the things while you are here’. The Court of Appeal commented that an ABE interview should not be used simply to get a child to repeat on tape what she may have said to someone else.
A was so distressed by his interview that he was physically sick during it. Meanwhile, B made no allegations of abuse in his ABE interview. A striking feature was that some abuse allegations, which the foster carer reported the children as making, were never mentioned by them in their interviews.
Also of concern was that the police interviewer subsequently conducted what were called ‘fast track’ interviews of the three younger children at home, without keeping a proper record of what questions were asked or how the children responded. The Court of Appeal called this ‘unorthodox’.
The children’s accounts contained many inconsistencies. C had a history of making, and then retracting, false allegations against others in the past. D alleged that the children had been taken to hotels, where they were abused and filmed. But the police could find no evidence to substantiate her dramatic claims. She claimed that there was a hiding place in the wall at home: the police knocked a hole in the wall, but could find nothing.
Eventually the police concluded that the ABE interviews could not be used in court, and that the children’s accounts would not stand up to scrutiny. So no criminal charges were brought. However, there were parallel care proceedings in the family court. A was confined in a specialist residential unit for victims/perpetrators of sexual abuse.
At a pre-trial hearing, complaints were made about the ‘fast track’ interviews at the trial. But the family judge refused to allow the interviewing officer to be called to be questioned. Even more worryingly, the judge decided that none of the children should give evidence, either.
Many people would find this bizarre: if a criminal trial had proceeded, the children would have had to give evidence, and be questioned (albeit via video link). Apparently, the practice in the family courts is that even mature teens should not give evidence.
This approach ignored a Supreme Court ruling from 2010, Re W, where the Supreme Court said that the question of whether a child should give evidence should be approached on a case-by-case basis. A blanket prohibition on children giving evidence was incompatible with the right to a fair trial. Baroness Hale stressed that focused questions, which put forward a different explanation for certain events, ‘may help the court to do justice between the parties’. That ruling went unheeded by the family courts.
This is remarkable, suggesting that the family courts operate a separate system of legal rules unaffected by fundamental legal principles, such as the right to a fair trial and the supremacy of judgements of the Supreme Court (the doctrine of legal precedent). It is perhaps not surprising that many ordinary people view the family courts as inherently unfair.
The judge’s reason for not calling the children was that, ‘the one question you cannot put to the child witnesses, is “You’re lying aren’t you?”’. So, even if they had been called, they would not have been challenged on that basis. The judge also said that, if they were called, ‘I would not allow you to put the contradictions. You have got to bear in mind the age of the children.’
But at 8, 10 and 15, these children were not tender toddlers. At this juncture, the judge had not even seen the videos of the ABE interviews, nor had she watched them by the time the trial began. So day one was spent watching them.
The Court of Appeal was very critical of the judge’s reasons for making the findings of abuse that she did. It said that she failed to acknowledge, or deal with, the numerous deviations from good practice in the police interviews. She adopted a broad-brush and superficial approach, and failed to engage in the level of analysis that was required. She was wrong to treat each child’s account as corroborating the others’, and failed to grapple with the many inconsistencies in their interviews and earlier ‘disclosures’. For example, the fact that D made accusations, which differed from those of her brothers, and the fact that B made no allegations in his interview, could not be corroborative.
Then the Court of Appeal had to address the way that A was treated. A has a learning disability, which was described as ‘significant’. He had his own solicitor and a guardian. They visited him a couple of months before the trial, to go through the evidence with him. A, like any client, was entitled to legal professional privilege: the opportunity to receive legal advice in confidence. But when the judge learned that this meeting had taken place, she ordered the guardian to file a statement about it.
At the meeting, A was accompanied by a key worker named ‘G’. A’s solicitor explained that they ‘needed a steer’ from A as to whether anything sexually inappropriate had happened to him or not. As the Court of Appeal noted, it was unclear what a person with a significant learning disability would understand. A did not respond. The guardian noted that A seemed tense and exhausted.
During a break, the guardian wrote the words ‘YES’ and ‘NO’ on a piece of paper. She left it with A and his key worker. The key worker decided that A was too tense to pick up the pen. So she took the pen and asked A which answer he wanted her to tick, A indicated ‘YES’. So G ticked ‘YES’.
The Court of Appeal decided that A’s rights to a fair trial were breached to a significant degree by all of this. The judge’s order for an account of his meeting with his legal team was ‘highly unusual’. The exercise whereby G ticked ‘YES’ was evidentially dubious, not least as A’s understanding of what he was being asked was wholly unclear. The Court of Appeal said that the judge’s analysis of the evidence in relation to A was ‘both confused and inadequate’.
This case is a warning of how unfairly the system can operate when allegations of abuse surface. It’s unsurprising that members of the public are hesitant about making abuse allegations. Their confidence is unlikely to improve, unless police investigations and legal hearings become much more rigorous.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and DISSECTING LEFTISM. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.