At last night’s Ethnicity Awards, the late BBC newsreader and correspondent George Alagiah was honoured with a posthumous award for Services to Journalism, collected by his wife and their two sons. Former colleague BBC correspondent Reeta Chakrabati paid tribute: "George Aalgiah was a trailblazer and an icon. Although the industry still has many diversity challenges our TV bulletins now regularly feature journalists of colour."
Labour MP Dawn Butler was among the guests. We spoke to her about the challenges of working to combat racism. "Ultimately we have to dismantle structures and systems and that's a lot harder than just having one or two people in an organisation," she told The Londoner. "Sometimes you take a step forward and two steps back because the push back is really heavy and hard and fast."
TV fashion guru Gok Wan scooped the Role Model Award. "The world is a bit broken," he addressed the room. “You can’t wake up any day without witnessing brokenness around you, fights and evilness. I hate it because I want to look at the world as a glass half full,” he said. We caught up with him after his speech. "We have to remain optimistic but not stop fighting and working hard together," he said.
Big Brother’s AJ Odudu received the Best Presenter award and delivered her acceptance speech from the Big Brother studio. “I know all of you in the room this evening are doing so much work for inclusion and equality,” she said in her speech. Also there were Get Well Soon's Dr Ranj Singh, actor Kiell Smith-Bynoe, and TV presenter Judi Love, who hosted the ceremony.