20 years ago today Stephen Lawrence and his best friend Duwayne Brooks were set upon by a gang of white boys intent on causing harm to anyone based on the colour of their skin. Stephen and Duwayne being black males became their target. Sadly Stephen was unable to get away from the brutal and fatal attack and died. The police were deemed as not treating the case seriously at the time and even treated the surviving victim as a criminal.
The Macpherson report came out years later after the murder and the first trials and told the UK what the Black community already knew and experienced. There was institutional racism in the police force. However still today some things have not changed. Stop and searches of non-whites have increased. Black people are stopped 1 in 10 times and yet only a small proportion are actually ever charged with a crime. The UK has a long way to go indeed. The comment sections of certain newspapers are filled with folk saying it is time to let it go and move on. However all his murderers are not behind bars. So the fight must continue.
At the time of his untimely passing Stephen was a student with dreams of becoming an architect. His family have set up a charity The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust that raises funds to help young people achieve their dreams in the same industry.
Today a memorial service was held at St. Martins In the Fields Church in London in remembrance of Stephen.