Race ‘still an issue’ in Barbados


Despite some progress, Barbados still has some way to go regarding race, class and unity, says a veteran church leader.

Using himself as an example, Bishop Dr Gerry Seale, presiding bishop of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the West Indies, delivering the sermon during the annual National Service of Thanksgiving last Monday, alluded to examples of racism and classism still present in the island.

“One of the interesting things being born a white Bajan is that it’s often assumed I’m a visiting tourist. Fortunately I know who I am, even though they try to get me in a taxi every time I walk down Broad Street,” he said.

That humorous anecdote aside, Seale said there were more serious examples he had witnessed as one half of an inter-racial couple. He said there was once a deep class divide in Barbados back in the days of slavery when Whites, Blacks and Mulattos were all segregated and while much had changed, much had remained the same.