Despite Ukip's nationalist stance and Nigel Farage's recent comments on abolishing anti-discrimination laws, many people would expect the anti-EU party to have the worst record on diversity. But it doesn't.
According to a new study, it is in fact Natalie Bennett's Green party that has the lowest percentage of black and minority ethnic (BME) candidates of the main national parties.
However, as the study from the UCL's Constitution Unit shows, all the parties have a bad record when compared to the 17 per cent of the whole population who identify as BME.
I’m not surprised at all. The fact is all the parties have failed to put into practice a comprehensive programme to recruit, retain and promote BME talent.
- Ashok Viswanathan, deputy director of cross-party group Operation Black Vote
In a statement to the Evening Standard, the Green Party's equalities spokesperson, Benali Hamdache, explained that it had not finished collecting data on its candidates yet and would look to address the issues once that process is completed.
What we do know is that one in seven candidates in London is from a BME background — and we have people from all walks of life standing for the Greens up and down the country.
The Green Party is committed to standing up for the rights and concerns of BME communities and we need to ensure we’re doing that not only through our policies but in the way we do politics as well.
That’s why we have quotas for BME candidates in European Elections, a BME network to recruit candidates and support their candidacy, and it’s why we launched a group dedicated to representing BME members of our party at our recent spring conference.
- Benali Hamdache, Green Party equalities spokesperson
But as the New Stateman's Stephen Bush pointed out, the Green Surge that has been so prominent in the media in recent months also turns out to have been a White Surge.