Prince Harry: 'Institutional racism has no place in our societies'

  • Prince Harry spoke of Princess Diana's character during the virtual 2020 Diana Awards.
  • The Duke of Sussex said his mother "stood up for people who needed it" as he urged the youth to make a change amid Black Lives Matters protests around the world.
  • Harry said "institutional racism has no place in our societies" as he vowed to be "part of the change" going forward.

Prince Harry made an impassioned speech during the 2020 Diana Awards.

The awards show, which honours young people making a difference by following in Princess Diana's footsteps, took place virtually on Wednesday. Prince Harry recorded a video message played during the ceremony in which he spoke about his mother. 1 July also would've marked the princess' 59th birthday.

ALSO READ | Prince William writes touching letter to charity honouring Princess Diana on behalf of himself and Prince Harry

"I know that my mother has been an inspiration to many of you," he said, congratulating the honourees, "and I can assure you she would've been fighting in your corner. Like many of you, she never took the easy route, or the popular one, or the comfortable one. But she stood for something. And she stood up for people who needed it."

He added: "Right now we're seeing situations around the world where division, isolation and anger are dominating as pain and trauma come to the surface. But I see the greatest hope in people like you. And I'm confident about the world's future and its ability to heal because it is in your hands.

"My wife said recently that our generation and the ones before us haven't done enough to right the wrongs of the past. I too am sorry. Sorry that we haven't got the world to the place you deserve it to be. Institutional racism has no place in our societies, yet it is still endemic. Unconscious knowledge must be acknowledged without blame to create a better world for all of you. I want you to know that we are committed to being part of the solution, and to being part of the change that you are all leading. Now is the time, and we know that you can do it."


Liam Payne, Will Poulter, Emma Thompson and more also made special appearances during the virtual ceremony. Though Meghan Markle wasn't present, the duchess recently made a speech of her own in which she too addressed the civil unrest in the US as Black Lives Matter protests continue, and spoke to Althea Bernstein whose face was burnt in a "racially-motivated hate crime" last week.

Harry and Meghan have made it their mission to address racial injustice as part of their focus going forward with Archewell, their new organisation. They've therefore been holding meetings with community leaders to see how they can get involved and make a difference.  

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