The original plan for the British royal family was that the focus for this week would be on Prince William and Catherine’s trip to the United States for the Earthshot Prize event that’s happening tomorrow. Their arrival, instead, was somewhat overshadowed yesterday when, just hours before they were due to make their first appearance, a now-former but very senior member of the household, a now-former Lady of the Household, in fact, committed racism against Ngozi Fulani, the founder of Sistah Space, who was invited to a reception at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday hosted by Queen Consort Camilla to raise awareness about domestic abuse.
Buckingham Palace then released a statement to say that Lady Susan Hussey has since been removed from her position and that they’ve reached out to Ngozi to further discuss the matter. But that’s news to Ngozi and during multiple appearances this morning on UK television she maintained that she has yet to hear from the palace. Which means that, even though she’s a big part of the story, she was never consulted about the solution. Because as usual, when it comes to matters of race, these people don’t know what the f-ck they’re doing. Because, of course, Buckingham Palace’s priority yesterday wasn’t about how to address the racism and how to make their spaces more inclusive and representative, their priority was public image, their priority was themselves. As always, they center themselves. And you cannot participate in productive conversations about equality that result in meaningful change when you center yourself, especially not this institution with its historical ties to the slave trade.
This is why Ngozi tweeted yesterday that it’s the “system that needs to be revised”:
Thanks everyone for their support. It is not our wish to reveal the person involved, it is the system that needs to be revised.— Sistah Space (@Sistah_Space) November 30, 2022
Yes the person was offensive, but it serves no purpose to name & shame her, it would make us just as bad. We prefer that this be handled kindly ðŸ™ðŸ¾
Lady Susan Hussey is a product of that system. Getting rid of her doesn’t make a difference if the system itself is still rotten. And, as I mentioned yesterday in my post about this, it’s not like this is the first time the British royals have been called out over their racial insensitivities. Earlier this year, the British royal family’s colonial past was the big headline during both Will and Kate’s and Edward and Sophie’s trips to the Caribbean as both couples were criticised for failing to truly understand the sentiments of the communities they were visiting prior to their tours, obliviously planning their schedules like the royal tours in previous times, once again centering themselves over the people they claimed to be wanting to engage with and hear from.
And, of course, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have called out the institution for its racism and the reaction then was to deny and deflect – which means that very little, if any, effort was made to really engage in diversity and sensitivity training and improvement. The reason we know that is because Ngozi was not invited to be part of the solution. They went ahead and made a decision without consulting her. So if they really had “diversity and inclusivity policies” in place, as they’re claiming, those policies clearly aren’t working. Probably because no one was actually paying attention.
What must be even more frustrating for them, though, is that they can’t even blame Harry and Meghan for this incident because the Sussexes were nowhere near the scene of the crime. Still…Harry and Meghan have done them a favour today. More on that later.
For now, in this post, let’s keep the attention on Ngozi because you can imagine, as a Black woman who called out the royal institution, the bastion of white supremacy, there’s a lot of toxicity being aimed at her right now. One way to pivot away from all that hate is to learn more about Sistah Space and their work “supporting African and Caribbean heritage women affected by domestic and sexual abuse”.
Yours in gossip,