Stormzy is reaching deep into his pockets to donate £10million to help black people over the next 10 years.
The multi award-winning rapper is on a mission to support organisations which fight for racial equality, following George Floyd’s death which sent shockwaves around the world.
Floyd died on May 25, while under arrest for a petty crime. Ex-police officer Derek Chauvin was filmed kneeling on his neck for nearly nine minutes, ultimately killing Floyd.
Now, Stormzy – real name Michael Ebenazer Kwadjo Omari Owuo Jr. – and his brand #Merky are pledging to tackle racism right here in the UK in a lifetime commitment that he hopes will “even the playing field” for black people.
In a statement, he said: “The uncomfortable truth that our country continuously fails to recognise and admit, is that black people in the UK have been at a constant disadvantage in every aspect of life – simply due to the colour of our skin.
“I’m lucky enough to be in the position I’m in and I’ve heard people often dismiss the idea of racism existing in Britain by saying, ‘If the country’s so racist, how have you become a success?!’ and I reject that with this, ‘I am not the UK’s shining example of what supposedly happens when a black person works hard.’
“There are millions of us. We are not far and few. We have to fight against the odds of a racist system stacked against us, designed for us to fail from before we are even born.”
Stormzy added: “Black people have been playing on an uneven field for far too long and this pledge is a continuation in the fight to finally try and even it.”
The support is the latest in a line of Stormzy’s growing philanthropy work, including his scholarship for black students at the University of Cambridge covering their tuition costs.
He has also been vocal about the other political issues, wearing a stab vest during his headline Glastonbury 2019 performance and playing a speech by Labour MP David Lammy discussing the black and minority ethnic people in the criminal justice system.
Meanwhile, significant changes have already been unfolding around the globe as the Black Live Matter movement continues to open people’s eyes to systemic problems.
In particular, Minneapolis have banned the use of choke holds – the city in the state of Minnesota where Floyd died – and Chauvin is now being charged with second-degree murder, despite his initial charge of third-degree murder.