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Tony Bellew, Dominique Walker, Neil Danns and more express their views on Black Lives Matter and what the future should hold

4 years ago

A group of influential black Liverpudlian’s took to Zoom to discuss the current race relations situation happening across the world and more specifically in their home city of Liverpool.

The group consisting of key representatives from various sectors including Sports, Music & Entertainment and Community & Education decided to use the medium to discuss not just what is happening but what should happen going forward.

The conversation was the brainchild of the Liverpool-based freelance TV producer, Jernice Easthope. Jernice, who hails from the L8 area of Liverpool, felt so touched by the recent activity throughout the UK and the U.S that she turned to what she knew best; researching and telling stories through media. Calling on some of her friends and colleagues from across Liverpool, Jernice has been producing a series of zoom conversations entitled ‘What Next? Conversations About Racism’.

Neil Danns

However with the latest episode she decided to take things to the next level, calling on her friends which included British former Professional Boxer Tony Bellew, Dominique Walker, University lecturer JMU, one of the founders of Anthony Walker Foundation, Professional football player Neil Danns, music entrepreneur and curator of the Liverpool International Music Festival Yaw Owusu and Chair of Kingsley United, Head of Year Calderstones School, Earl Jenkins.

Jernice stated, “I have personal and working connections with everyone involved and so naturally I felt the need to share a true exploration and discussion about identity and culture in relation to Liverpool – especially in the absence of appointed cultural officers who have been notable quiet during this time”, Jernice continues, “Each person involved are successful and excel at what they do plus they have respect amongst their communities and sector. I wanted them to be able to express themselves at this time so as to provide understanding, hope solidarity and to push forward the dialogue”

Tony Bellew

The conversation has not just been a good piece of content for audiences, it is evident from the discussion that the bringing together of everyone on the call was overdue and could potentially lead to the members actively working together to lead on some projects to help make some massive changes.

“That conversation was almost cathartic”, says Yaw Owusu, “Just discussing what we can do with people who want to do something, are proactive but also think quite practically and are prepared to use their understanding and their influence to do something for the greater good. I’m excited as to where this could go next.”

The discussion is a very honest and vulnerable one which reflects the need for change, but the complexity of the challenge ahead. However on display are fresh dynamic views and approaches by some very connected and influential people .

Dominique Walker

Earl Jenkins said, “There’s hope in the fact that there is potential of a collective voice that speaks on multiple levels. Add that to the willingness – with the right type of people around the table – this could be a huge help to the specific challenges that need to be dealt with right here in Liverpool.”

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