The local community has reacted with shock and outrage in Walthamstow, East London, after Islamophobic graffiti was daubed on a public street.
The graffiti, reading “Muslim c**ts,” was seen in the street by a concerned local resident and uploaded to Facebook. Local Labour MP Stella Creasy vowed action and called for the community to “stand together” in the face of such attacks.
“Hello everyone – to be clear this is hate crime. It has been reported and the police and the council are moving into action… Sadly I fear there are those who wish to actively promote hatred and bigotry in society as part of their efforts to disrupt our community and turn people against each other. We know that is not the Walthamstow way and so we must stand together and not let anyone attack people for their faith, ethnicity, sexuality or nationality. Walthamstow means welcome- and we must be a place of welcome to all who share those values of tolerance and diversity.”Stella Creasy MP
This is merely the latest Islamophobic incident in the UK since the Christchurch terrorist attack 11 days ago, with charity Tell MAMA recording a 600% increase in Islamophobic hate crimes since the atrocity.
Speaking to The Metro, Tell MAMA called for the government to “take concerted action through education, the criminal justice system, restorative justice and other means” to tackle the rise in Islamophobia in the country.
Speaking for Al Jazeera, Araw Ibrahim says that the Muslim community is living in fear and that their fears aren’t “just restricted to the rise of the far right.”
“Muslim communities around the UK have long been complaining about the rise of Islamophobia and fears of attacks like this. This fear isn’t just restricted to the rise of the far right, it’s also about mainstream media outlets reporting inaccurately and unfairly about Muslims; it’s about 31% of schoolchildren thinking Muslims are taking over the UK; it’s about the fact that over 50% of hate crimes in the UK are directed towards Muslims.”Araw Ibrahim
Home Secretary Sajid Javid has announced plans for an extra £5m for security training, with the government doubling funds available for places of worship. While the move and acknowledgement of the problem has been welcomed, The Muslim Council of Britain has said the funding “was not proportionate to the risk” that Muslims now face in Britain.