Black barrister tells David Lammy racial discrimination must be confronted

26 September 2020, 17:17 | Updated: 26 September 2020, 17:19

By Seán Hickey

The barrister caught in the eye of a racism row told David Lammy that she isn't looking for preferential treatment after being repeatedly mistaken for a defendant in court - she just wants to be treated with respect.

Alexandra Wilson is a barrister and earlier this week she was caught in the middle of a storm following her revelations that she was mistaken for a defendant in a court at least four times in one day.

David Lammy wondered what she thought was going on across those four occasions. "It was definitely my race," the barrister replied.

"It did feel as though I was being challenged," said Ms Wilson, adding that "the only thing separating me from the other people was that I wasn't white."

She went on to tell David that this kind of treatment has happened "many times."

"I wanted to cry," she revealed. "I was so humiliated."

Alexandra Wilson was repeatedly mistaken for a defendant in Magistrates Court
Alexandra Wilson was repeatedly mistaken for a defendant in Magistrates Court. Picture: Twitter/EssexBarrister

"I'm not expecting any preferential treatment," she insisted, telling David that her philosophy is that "everyone should be treated with respect."

"What confidence can black people have if they are a defendant in a criminal court in this country," a dejected David asked after listening to the barrister's experience.

Ms Wilson wondered how can she reassure her clients of the fairness of the system when she is discriminated by it.

"I don't wanna be sitting here in another 20 years with this same old story going on," David insisted.

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