Campaign Against Racial Discrimination (CARD)

 During its short existence, CARD has been a fomidable ally in the quest to build racial harmony.  At a meeting held on 10 January 1965 the name the Campaign Against Racial Discrimination (CARD) was officially adopted. The main protagonist of CARD was Dr David Pitt who later became Lord Pitt of Hampstead.  CARD declared its opposition to all forms of racial discrimination and called for legislation as one means of fighting it.  However, the Executive Committee members revealed two main factions: the effective working majority and the dissidents. Neverthe less, both factions were committed to changing the Race Relations Bill. Personal rivalry and attitudes of the factions persisted, causing continued disunity.

At the Founding Convention in July 1965, both CARD and WISC made further representations against the Labour government's White Paper on Immigration from the Commonwealth. In particular it was concerned with the introduction of new powers of detention and deportation and with the government's dangerous and arbitrary authority. 

Because of the continuing rivalry in the Executive, in February 1966, the Standing Conference of West Indian Organizations disaffiliated from CARD. Although WISC disaffiliated, Dr David Pitt remained close to WISC and was able to help stare Joe Hunte quest to place his race relations into law under the 1965 Race Relations Act. Like WISC, CARD's efforts to coordinate and work with the Indian and Pakistani groups in Britain were not successful. The Indian Workers' Association (IWA) was never formally affiliated to CARD, while the National Federation of Pakistani Associations was not functioning effectively in 1967.

Apart from its relations with the Southhall IWA, CARD's contacts with local Indian associations were rare and weak, in spite of some branches' being in touch intermittently with their local CARD groups. Nonetheless, it was evident by spring 1967 that CARD was far removed from its community base, and internal division did not help. While some of the Executive Committee members were hoping for the passage of an extended anti‚Äźdiscrimination law that summer, a different group were laying plans for the future: their immediate goal was not to press for legislation, but to attempt a takeover of CARD.

These conflicts began emerging around 26 July 1967 when the Home Secretary, Roy Jenkins, announced the government's intention to extend the Race Relations Act of 1965 to housing, employment, and insurance and credit facilities. The ban on entry to Britain of the American Black Power leader Stokely Carmichael, and the arrest of Michael X on charges of violating the public order provisions of the Race Relations Act 1965, aroused resentment among people of African Heritage who had campaigned for the 1965 Race Relations ACT.

CARD's united front to champion the interest of all migrants finally collapsed in the late 1960s. The total responsibility for delivering the 1965 Race Relations Act fell alone to West Indian Standing Conference.  Niether the Pakistani nor the Indian Organisations played any significant role in its delivery.



Important Links: 

www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/cabinetpapers/themes/origins-commonwealth-immigration.htm

http://www.education.gov.uk/rsgateway/







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