Punish A Muslim Day Response
Categories: Past Event Articles
Monday April 30 2018
On the 3rd April, the Waltham Forest community came together to condemn the call to “punish a Muslim”.
The day started off with a gathering at the town square, which provided an opportunity for non-Muslims and Muslims to stand together in an attempt to send out a strong message: we stand together. Speakers at the town square included Labour leader Claire Coghill, Saira Mir (founder of pl84u Al-Suffa), Sophie Bolt (Stand up to racism) and Dr Tuba Mazhari (Waltham Forest MEND working group). The nature of the talks ranged from the importance of standing together as one community, to not allow for the letter to scare Muslims, and the importance of acknowledging that the letter is not an isolated form of Islamophobia. Waltham Forest MEND introduced members of the community to MEND’s Islamophobia response unit, which provides victims of Islamophobia with advice and support.
Later that day, volunteers and participants made their way to Faizaan-e-Islam mosque where the community were joined by MP Stella Creasy. Together, participants encircled the mosque as a mark of unity. Later on, in the mosque, prayers for safety and peace were made by members of the catholic, Jewish and Muslim community.
Finally, the team made their way to Leabridge road mosque who had, like Faizan e Islam, opened up the doors of the mosque for visitors. There were a few stalls including one which provided individuals an opportunity to try the hijab, or to have henna applied. Waltham Forest MEND also hosted a stall in which we raised of awareness of the Islamophobia response unit as a means of support.
The evening ended with a series of talks by prominent members of the community including MP Stella Creasy, Canon Steven Saxby, Sophie Bolt, Irfan Akhtar (Waltham Forest Council of mosques) and Dr Tuba Mazhari (Waltham Forest Muslim engagement and development), followed by encircling of the mosque.