Racism is still widespread in Wales despite the changes brought about by the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry, campaigners have warned
It comes after the London-based Institute for Race Relations (IRR) revealed that six people in Wales have died since 1993 in either clear-cut or suspected racist attacks.
But while the Stephen Lawrence case has remained in the public eye for almost two decades, many of the six deaths in Wales have long since faded into obscurity – despite one of the cases remaining unsolved.
James Tossell, 16, died in a fire in 1998 after he and a friend, Steven Biggs, barricaded themselves into Mr Biggs’ flat in Kenfig Hill, Bridgend, to escape a gang of brick-throwing youths.
Charges against two youths suspected of starting the fire were dropped because of insufficient evidence and the CPS later decided there was insufficient evidence to prosecute the officers involved in the original attack’s investigation, after a complaint was made by the Tossell family.
Alicja Zalesinska, assistant director of Race Equality First, said racist attacks were reported to the Cardiff-based charity on a “daily basis”.
She added racism is rife in many organisations in Wales, but is not faced up to because of an overwhelming fear of being labelled “racist”.
She said: “Firstly, if we are talking about racism in general we shouldn’t be talking about murders only, which are obviously very high profile and thankfully very rare.
“Racist attacks are still happening on a daily basis and it is not something that is very often mentioned.
“We regularly get reports from people who are being harassed or assaulted in their own communities. Quite a lot of this is happening in council housing and in estates.
“It could be isolated incidents or things that are happening on a daily or a weekly basis and it is very difficult to prove that they are motivated by racism.
“People don’t like to say that there is racism in Wales, Cardiff, or anywhere, but from our experience it is there and from our experience people don’t tend to treat these incidents as seriously as they should be because they might seem like low-level incidents. For example, if someone throws a stone at your house it might not seem like much, but if that happens every day it can have a very serious impact.”