ITV’s Tony Morris adds his support to AWF and explains why
I’m a man of a certain age. I grew up in sixties and seventies Britain – a very different society to the one we all live in now.
In Portsmouth in 1973 there was no such thing as hate crime, or discrimination or racism.
The ‘N’ word was used to my face on a daily basis. TV shows perpetrated every negative racial stereotype and slur imaginable and got record viewing audiences.
I was regularly asked what it was like in the jungle and didn’t I think it was time I returned there.
I wasn’t alone. This was the experience of many minority ethnic people at the time. It wasn’t great. But we got on with it…. hoping that one day it would all get better. Hoping that one day you’d be able to walk down the street without the fear of being abused or attacked just because you were different.
But it didn’t get better did it.
We all remember what happened to a young man named Stephen Lawrence on a street in South East London in 1993.
And we all remember vividly what happened to a young man called Anthony Walker on a street in Huyton, Merseyside in 2005.
I had just started working for ITV Granada around the time of Anthony’s murder. We covered the story in great detail. The horrific act, the aftermath, the court case and the subsequent jailing of Taylor and Barton. For me this has always been more than just another news story. Which is why I was so pleased to finally get the chance to interview Gee a few months ago.
One of my first questions to her in our Media City studios was – “Don’t you get angry when you think about the two men who took your son away?”
Even the engineers in our gallery went quiet to hear her answer.
“I don’t get angry” she said… “What’s the point – it won’t bring Anthony back – I prefer to focus on forgiveness and doing all I can to make things better for everyone.”
It was at that point that I realised I’d like to get involved with the Anthony Walker Foundation.
We all have a responsibility to do what we can to bring about change. The Foundation has been doing that really well for a long time. I’m just hoping I can help and sorry I didn’t get involved earlier.
- Next >>