30th April 1963: The Bristol Bus Boycott against discriminatory recruitment begins



hello and welcome to history pod on the 30th of April 1963 a boycott against the Bristol omnibus company in England was launched due to their racist employment policy around 3,000 people of West Indian origin lived in the city of Bristol in 1963 predominantly around the st. Paul's area there was not yet any legislation in Britain against discriminating on racial grounds so it was common in both housing and employment while so-called coloreds often suffered violence at the hands of gangs of white Teddy boys in 1955 the same year as the Montgomery bus boycott in Alabama the transport in general workers union that represented bus drivers had reportedly passed a resolution that colored workers should not be employed the management of the bristol omnibus company shared this attitude and consequently despite an acute labor shortage in the early 1960s it was impossible to get a job on a bus crew unless you were white a group of West Indian men formed an action group to challenge the situation in April 1963 the London accented Paul Stevenson telephoned the bus company and set up an interview for Guy Bailey a young man of West Indian heritage he was turned away from the interview because he was black and at a press conference in his flat on the 29th of April Stephenson called for people to boycott the bus company until the colour bar was abolished the boycott which was supported by people of all races across the city as well as the press succeeded on the 28th of August the same day that Martin Luther King made his I have a dream speech the company's management announced the end of its discriminatory employment policy the city's first non-white bus conductor began work the following month you