Visiting the Slavery Museum in Liverpool to mark the beginning of this year’s Labour Party Conference, Leader of the Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn and Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities, Dawn Butler announced Labour’s plans to establish an Emancipation Educational Trust under the next Labour government.
The next Labour government will provide a grant for a new Slavery Educational Trust in order to educate future generations about the history of slavery and fight for emancipation.
Expected projects that could be funded by the new body include visits to the International Slavery Museum, school programmes, visits to historical sites and other activities.
Labour will consult on the structure and detail of the new body with businesses, charities, academics and others with interest and knowledge in the slave trade while Labour is in Opposition, with a view to having the Trust ready to launch as soon as Labour is in government.
Ahead of the visit, Dawn, as Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities, said:
“The International Slavery Museum in Liverpool is located metres away from the major port for the transatlantic slave trade, where many local merchants and their ships were involved until its abolition. As a result much of the city’s wealth in the 18th century came from the trade. Slave ships were often built or repaired here and nearly one and a half million Africans were forcibly transported across the Atlantic in Liverpool ships.
“Liverpool made an official apology for its role in the transatlantic slave trade in 1999, and this institution serves as a reminder of the horrors of human trafficking both past and present.
“A new body focusing on the transatlantic African slave trade will provide more opportunities like this institution here in Liverpool, for people to learn about the injustice of slavery as well as the great strength and resilience of those enslaved and the resistance of those who fought against it. Windrush brought into sharp relief the need for this sort of education and a stark reminder of the history of colonialism and empire and its impact on modern Britain.
“It will also give people the chance to learn about the wealth and beauty of Africa and the Caribbean, and the huge debt we owe to generations of migrants who have come from these continents.”