PCC and Assistant PCCs back Islamophobia Awareness Month

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This November, Tell MAMA ran a 'No to Hate' campaign to tackle hate crime, supported by the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner.

Making the most of Birmingham's young population, Tell MAMA ran its No to Hate campaign to educate children and teenagers about the importance of tolerance.  Workshops were held in Moseley, Bordesley Green and Kings Heath by mosques, youth centres and schools, which opened a dialogue between cultural groups and provided an opportunity to allay distrust.

Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson stressed the importance of solving the problems highlighted by the campaign.

He said: "We are recruiting 1,150 police officers and staff with an emphasis on attracting BME applicants, because we want our force to look like the people it represents.  We have a zero-tolerance approach towards hate crime, and victims should know that when they report, they will get a response. 

"No to Hate has been a truly fantastic campaign to raise awareness of issues at the forefront of policing priorities, and one which we were pleased to be a part of."

The campaign raised awareness of intolerance and hate generally, but Islamophobia formed its focus.

Assistant Police and Crime Commissioner Judy Foster attended an event at Green Oak Academy in Moseley which highlighted issues of particular concern to Muslim women.

"We held a discussion with the women and young people about how Islamophobia often targets and affects women the most and we discussed how to tackle it," she said.

"Our community is a melting pot of different cultures, faiths, religions and ways of life.  We must protect its vibrancy and put a stop to the hate that can ferment when tolerance of such diversity breaks down.  Islamophobia must be stamped out."

Building a stronger and more cohesive community is central to the Police and Crime Commissioner's new Police and Crime Plan released in the last few weeks. No to Hate illustrated strong public engagement with some of the most significant barriers to this goal, along with determination to see them to overcome.

Tell MAMA's West Midlands Organiser, Luke Holland, expressed his thanks to the West Midland's Police and Crime Commissioner's office for its support during the month's campaigning.  "It was great to have Assistant PCCs Ashley Bertie and Cllr Judy Foster join us at different events. I thank them for taking back ideas and suggestions raised by those who attended our workshops," he added.