IHRC’s launch of the report ‘Environment of Hate: the New Normal for Muslims in the UK and Europe’ is set to take place on Tuesday, 27 September at the European Parliament in Brussels and will seek to convey the way Islamophobia across Europe has evolved into new, accepted forms of discrimination. Special attention is given to the UK government’s PREVENT anti-extremism strategy which the authors say is demonising and alienating Muslims. With an overview of headlines in popular media, the report highlights embedded stereotypes and coded discriminatory language. The Muslim minority becomes victim to the social attitudes of the majority – learned through government policy and the media they consume – and this is then expressed in acts of hatred, hostility and violence.
This is the second such study the authors have undertaken in the UK and it takes into consideration age, religiosity and visible Muslimness as well as income and work status. Comparisons are also drawn with the findings in 2010 and the results are alarming.
Between 2010 and 2014 the number of people who reported seeing Islamophobia directed at someone else spiked from 50% to 82%. In the same period the number of people stating they had witnessed negative stereotypes about Islam and Muslims jumped from 69% to 93.3% suggesting these experiences have become almost universal for Muslims.
The authors blame the worsening conditions on what they call a ‘hate environment’ that has been deliberately whipped up by the media, politicans and the commentariat, the purpose of which is to ‘otherise’ Muslims and legitimise discriminatory treatment of them through official policy.
Hosted by MEPs Jean Lambert, Afzal Khan, and Sajjad Karim in collaboration with ARDI Intergroup; panel discussions will take place on the day featuring experts, academics, civil society organisations, EU institutions and European Muslim human rights activists. The launch will explore how to have an intersectional approach to discrimination and hate crime and how to improve the implementation of non-discrimination legislation.
Notes to editors:
The launch will take place at the European Parliament in Brussels on 27 September 2016 at 1pm. Those wishing to attend may register by clicking here
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IHRC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.
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