Dr Rob Berkeley, director of the Runnymede Trust, comments on multiculturalism in advance of a new counter-extremism strategy:
"Today’s announcement of an integration strategy from secretary of state for communities and local government, Eric Pickles, marks a dangerous and ill-advised reversion to assimilationist policy, where all differences of ethnicity and heritage are subsumed into a majoritarian ‘mainstream’.
"Meanwhile even in the wake of the Lawrence convictions we still see persistent racial inequality and injustice in our society; from education to employment, criminal justice to sport, on which the government is silent.
"The secretary of state appears to have completely misunderstood the problems we face in building a successful multi-ethnic society, and the solutions proposed as a result simply miss the point. This government has sought to make fairness its catchword; this strategy does nothing to turn such rhetoric into reality".