Watch: Nick Ferrari claims he is a person of colour in bizarre interview
Radio host Nick Ferrari has been criticised after claiming he is a “person of colour” during a debate about racism.
The white LBC presenter was hosting a segment on his show in response to reports in the Times that NHS leaders are being offered non-mandatory courses on micro-aggression behaviour.
One course, called 'Awareness of your intent' is focused on "creating social justice" and is delivered by Nova Reid, who has previously said that "regular exposure to racial micro-aggressions can cause more harm than overt acts of hate".
Introducing the segment, Ferrari outlined that — because of his unusual surname — he had been the "victim" of micro-aggressions throughout his life at the hands of teachers, pupils and work colleagues, who, he said, have asked him multiple times: "Where are you from?".
Speaking on his show to Mike Bankole, a race and representation researcher at King's College London, Ferrari dismissed the impact of such behaviour towards him, asking: "Is it offensive to ask where you're from? Should I have been offended since about the age of 12?"
Bankole said it was, to which the presenter added: "I've got a very strange last name to British people, so they're going to say where am I from.”
Bankole tried to explain why it was different for people of colour but Ferrari interrupted.
He said: "Well, I am of colour, of course, because I'm white, white is a colour. But why the problem?"
Ferrari added: "Am I not a person of colour if I'm white?
Bankole responded: "A person of colour is often used to refer to racial minorities, Nick, and you know that. You're a white man, Nick.”
"So white isn't a colour for you, Michael?" Ferrari asked.
He went on to say: "Why didn't you just say racial minorities? I don't understand why you don't use that expression."
Bankole, who is studying a PhD, later shared the audio on Twitter, saying: "Nick Ferrari just tried to convince me that, as a white man, he is a person of colour. How's your morning going?
"Here’s a clip of my (bizarre) exchange with Nick this morning."
Anthropologist and author Will Black tweeted: “Nick Ferrari isn't "a person of colour".
He added: “The problem of being ‘of colour’ isn't the colour but how people are treated as a result of their skin colour — and the rigged system that perpetuates racism.”
Former BBC Entertainment commissioner Sohail Shah, tweeted: “OMG I just can’t! Nick Ferrari demanding to know why he isn’t classed as a person of colour, as he’s white, and white is a colour. 2022 continues to deliver!”
Ferrari was previously criticised for asking a Black panellist on a TV show why she stayed in the UK when she was critical of elements of British society.
The LBC presenter was responding on the show after author Afua Hirsch hosted a segment about memorials for “problematic figures” being taken down across the world on Sky News panel debate show The Pledge in 2018.
LBC has been approached for a statement.