Black History Month Community Spotlight - Peace
Peace is a poet, journalist and author. He is a former Walsall Poet Laureate and still lives in the borough.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
BHM brings into focus historical events and history-making people of African-Caribbean descent. For me, it's an invite to contemplate on both the struggles and achievements of people of African-Caribbean descent.
What does it mean to you to be Black and British?
On one hand, it means being guaranteed to experience racism, financial hardship, being marginalised and potentially being less likely to succeed in life. It means being part of a minority, and being isolated in what can sometimes be a hostile and unfriendly environment. On the other hand, it means having a unique position in our society and being part of a developing culture that won't be found anywhere else in the world. It means having an opportunity to create something new and to represent the UK in a unique way.
Who inspires you?
Ida B. Wells. Darcus Howe. Marcus Garvey. Martin Luther King Jr. Morayo Akande. Moira Stewart.
What are your hopes and aspirations for the future?
To be a part of a more inclusive society and a society which makes an effort to be loving, clean and open to learning. Personally, to become a film or documentary maker.
What do you think would make Walsall a better place?
A more united community working towards a shared vision. A proud community that wants its environment to be litter-free, attractive and inviting to outsiders. Dedicated sports centres where activities such as perhaps ice skating, table tennis, and team sports can be encouraged and developed. Brighter buildings, greener surroundings. Create a dog-free zone in the Arboretum and continue to develop sporting activities there. A cleaner, more dynamic town centre where social networking can be encouraged and the range of pursuits on offer means that the town centre doesn't become a ghost town after 6pm. More work in the district centres to address anti-social behaviour and encourage pride in each area. Perhaps more sport that encourages participation by district - such as a Walsall football league that districts like Leamore, Pleck, Birchills, Harden can enter teams into, and where talent can be developed for our local teams such as Walsall FC or Walsall RFC. More innovation. Let's try new approaches.