Blaming black, asian and minority ethnic lone mums

// 10 April 2011

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BAMEcover-1.jpgFarida Yesmin, director of the Limehouse Project, in the forward to the organisation’s report on BAME lone mothers:

The figure of the

lone mother still continues to be disparaged, looked-down upon and in some cases, even blamed by

academic, economic and policy circles alike for a multitude of socio-economic ills.

Poverty has many

causes, yet somehow, it is the figure of the lone mother who is forced to bear the burden of unjust,

and often unfounded, accusations of doing ill by her children, her community and thus the wider

society, simply through her very existence as a single person – an existence that is complicated even

further for lone mothers of Black & Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) descent.

For whether they are

simply unable to access basic services because of language barriers, or having to live beyond the

poverty line with no apparent way out, BAME lone mothers in particular are set to suffer some of

the most dire consequences of recent cuts to England’s national welfare systems and third sector

funding streams. Often dismissed as voiceless or incapable, it is common practice for decision-making bodies to construct their own conclusions with little direct consultation as to who BAME lone

mothers are and what they need, thus forging ahead with judgments that have nothing to do with

lived realities.

Comments From You

Angela // Posted 10 April 2011 at 9:49 pm

Great piece. Just great. I am a white single mother and find this hard enough, so it’s good to learn more about the BAME single mother perspective. It infuriates me that women are reinventing the wheel every day, that we are learning so much as mothers, that never gets passed on to help the new mothers coming through, because we are so busy scrabbling to keep our own family’s lives together. When I engage with organisations these days I see it as my opportunity to educate them. For the most part they haven’t got a clue about the lives we are living, even as white mothers. I am interested in how we as mothers can work together to get our voices heard and to share our knowledge and experiences. In the first instance I am going to copy this to everyone I talk with on this issue. Keep strong, everyone. Let’s turn up the heat a bit. x

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