Ethnic minorities ‘struggled to follow’ GCP consultation on road hierarchy in Cambridge, says Mill Road shopkeeper
A consultation on Cambridge’s new road hierarchy – which could lead to some streets being closed to private motor vehicles – “discriminated against ethnic minorities“, according to a Mill Road shop owner.
Abdul Arain, owner of Al-Amin grocery store and treasurer of Mill Road Traders, spent more than an hour trying to fill out the online forms but found the questions overwhelmingly complicated.
He added that none of his neighbors had felt able to complete the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) consultation, which ended on Monday July 18.
Mr Arain said: “It was quite difficult to answer the survey because there was a lot of cross-referencing. I gave it to a member of my staff to see if he could follow it and he said, “I don’t understand what this requires you to do”.
“So I feel this survey is disengaging people from ethnic minorities, who should also be approached given Cambridge’s makeup. Lots of traders have messaged me saying they can’t follow it. .
[Read more: Biggest shake-up of Cambridge road network for 40 years]
“My neighbors from Turkey, China, Bangladesh and Hungary couldn’t finish it either. This eliminates a lot of people and the Equality Act states that ethnic minorities must be engaged. It discriminates against them.
“A better way to reach people with English as a second language would be to have face-to-face workshops where everything can be explained, instead of expecting people to read informational materials. The Zoom meetings they held were not good.
The consultation, which is part of the GCP’s access plans to the city, could lead to favoring pedestrians and cyclists in other parts of the city center, with motorized access limited to certain hours of the city. day and “as needed”.
A GCP spokesperson said the consultation was “open to everyone to respond” and “widely advertised”.
The spokesperson added: “We held an in-person meeting during the consultation period which was open to anyone who wished to attend, as well as online meetings to allow a wide range of people to share their points of view. seen.
[Read more: Tim Bick – There is no getting away from it – car use in Cambridge must be reduced]
“The consultation brochure, like all GCP consultation brochures, indicates that we are happy to provide information in other languages and/or in print.
“In addition to the online survey, we are posting a phone number that people can call to have their responses added to the survey for them.
“Comments will be considered by the GCP Board of Directors later this year.”