In the early years of the new century, equalities became a bigger issue at the Trust. Although equalities legislation had been put into place with the Race Relations Acts of 1965, 1968 and 1975, following the death of Stephen Lawrence, the 1999 Macpherson Enquiry found strong evidence of continuing institutional racism. The report from the enquiry made 70 recommendations to tackle racism and improve accountability in public bodies. Agnes Bryan and Inge Britt-Krause were appointed to tackle these issues by the then Dean Andrew Cooper. This made Agnes Bryan the Trust’s first BAME senior manager.
Not long after this Frank Lowe was appointed and began work developing Thinking Space to look at racism, particularly the unconscious aspects of racism and the distinctions made by Bion between ‘knowing’ and ‘knowing about’. Originally these meetings were held in the institutional space of the Tavistock Centre, but then following the riots of 2011 Frank took Thinking Space to Tottenham instigating a community development approach to improving mental health and community well-being by empowering communities to become agents of change themselves.
Interview with Agnes Bryan: long-read