Vulnerable should not pay for banking failure, says Jesse Jackson

By staff writers
20 Oct 2010

US civil rights activist Jesse Jackson has voiced concerns about how measures to tackle the credit crisis are affecting poorer people in Britain.

Jackson, a Baptist pastor, has also been addressing a Christian Aid rally and launching the StopWatch group to oppose 'profiling' and the abuse of police powers to stop and search black people and others in the UK.

Speaking to the BBC ahead of the coalition government's Comprehensive Spending Review today, he condemned the behaviour of financial institutions, declaring: "We bail out banks without bailing out the victims of bad bank behaviour."

He said that Britain needs "to work its way" out of retrenchment, but that the most vulnerable should not be made to pay.

The message contrasted significantly with claims by millionaire UK chancellor George Osborne that "we're all in this together".

On his initiatives to support the lack community in the UK, Jesse Jackson said: "People who not long ago were colonised became immigrants, and now they are citizens. It is unfinished business. We have to give all citizens of Britain equal protection under the law."

Jackson and the Secretary of State for International Development, Andrew Mitchell, addressed a 2,000 strong crowd at Methodist Central Hall in Westminster at 11am on Wednesday 20 October.

He said: declared: "We understand that times are hard, both in the US and the UK, but we are still better off than our neighbours in the developing world. We are reminded that in the Bible's New Testament, Jesus teaches us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and shelter the homeless."

"So while we fight for jobs and peace and justice in the UK and the US, we must remember to keep hope alive for our brothers and sisters in Africa, in the Caribbean, in South Asia, and all those in need around the world too."

[Ekk/3]

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