The Duke of Sussex says he had no idea that “unconscious bias existed” until “living a day or a week in my wife’s [Meghan’s] shoes”. Prince Harry, 36, made the frank admission as he joined activist Patrick Hutchinson in a video conversation for GQ magazine.
In June, Patrick went to Waterloo with friends to act as a peacekeeper during the Black Lives Matter protests that took place in London that month. The image of Patrick lifting a white counter-protester over his shoulder to safety went viral around the world.
Speaking about that moment, Patrick said: “It’s not black versus white. It is everyone versus racists.”
During their video chat, which lasted over half an hour, Harry spoke with Patrick about his actions that day, calling it as one of “a guardian angel” and what we need to do next to further anti-racism.
Harry told Patrick: “And unconscious bias, from my understanding, having the upbringing and the education that I had, I had no idea what it was. I had no idea it existed. And then, sad as it is to say, it took me many, many years to realise it, especially then living a day or a week in my wife’s shoes.”
He later added: “I think one of the most dangerous things is people within positions of power, whether it’s politics or whether it’s the media, where if you’re not aware of your own bias and you’re not aware of the culture within your system, then how are we ever going to progress? How are we ever going to get to that point where there is more fairness? Because it’s not a zero-sum game, right? Everyone benefits if the black community gets treated the way they should be treated.”
Earlier in October to mark the start of Black History Month, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex called for an end to structural racism in Britain, as they penned an article for the Evening Standard.
MORE: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s surprising home history revealed
Prince Harry spoke to Patrick Hutchinson for GQ magazine
Harry and Meghan also spoke with a group of young leaders from the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust to discuss fairness, justice and equal rights in July.
The Duchess also recorded a powerful message in support of the Black Lives Matter movement as she addressed the graduating 2020 class at her old school, the Immaculate Heart High Street School in June.
Patrick and his friends Jamaine Facey, Lee Russell and Chris Otokito have since set up Utcai – United to Change and Inspire, an organisation to champion equality, which will focus on class, race, education, mental health, reform, youth development and disability issues.
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