Hackney is no place for Islamophobia - Islamophobia Awareness Month 2022

As Islamophobia Awareness Month draws to a close, Cllr Fajana- Thomas, Cabinet member for Community Safety, reiterates Hackney’s year-round commitment to fighting Islamophobia and hate crime in all its forms. 

Cllr Susan Fajana-Thomas, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Regulatory Services

The theme for Islamophobia Awareness Month this year is #tacklingdenial of Islamophobia. This is really important because by denying Islamophobia’s existence, we dismiss the lived experiences of many and the opportunity to bridge gaps in our society.

Hackney is a brilliant borough where people of all faiths and backgrounds live and work side-by-side and we have a strong history of standing up to all forms of hatred and discrimination.

Last year, the Council passed a motion to commit to adopting the All-Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims definition of Islamophobia, making it easier for us to tackle Islamophobia in all of its forms. 

This sets out how Islamophobia - like other forms of hate crime - can have a particularly harmful effect on its victims as it attacks an integral part of who they are.

We work with faith leaders and communities all year round to ensure that all our communities are represented. This year we have launched two new projects to support victims of Islamophobia and all other forms of hate crime. 

The first project, Community Hate Crime Champions, has been created to support and advise victims and witnesses of a hate incident or crime; and the second project, our Hate Crime Forum, was created to ensure the Council’s work around hate crime in the borough is representative of all Hackney’s diverse communities. The forum is an inclusive group, who meet regularly to discuss and collaborate with the Council on best practice when sharing important messages around hate crime.

If you’ve been affected by Islamophobia or any other hate crime, please don’t suffer in silence - there are a range of services that can help you. You may feel anxious about reporting hate crime or concerned that reporting it wouldn’t make a difference, but every case helps us build up a picture of hate crime in Hackney and bring Islamophobes and racists to justice.

If you would like to support the work we are doing to tackle hate crime and become one of our Community Hate Crime Champions or join our Hate Crime forum please get in touch. 

I would also like to take this opportunity to commend the incredible work that our staff, partners and faith organisations do in the borough. Together, we will continue to root out all forms of hate crime, Islamophobia and racism in our communities.

Cllr Susan Fajana-Thomas, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Regulatory Services

Anyone who’s been affected by hate crime can: 

  • Report it to the police by calling 999 in an emergency, and 101 in other situations. 
  • If you do not wish to contact the Police, you can contact Stop Hate UK on 0800 138 1625 for free, confidential advice and support. 
  • Contact North London Victim Support for free local support on 0808 186 9291 (8am-8pm Monday to Friday) or 0808 1689 111 at all other times. You can also request support online
  • Access free, confidential and independent victim support through London Victim and Witness Service on 0808 168 9291 
  • Access a free Restorative Justice Service with Calm Mediation by telephone on freephone 0300 102 3031 or email atrestorative.justice@calmmediation.org 
  • Our Young Hackney website provides a range of resources for young people who want to talk to someone confidentially about a range of issues