01 Dec 2005
The Muslim Council of Britain supports the proposed establishment of the Commission for Equality and Human Rights and calls on the government not to dilute its planned role.
“We are in no doubt that the new Commission is a prize worth fighting for. The Commission has the potential to deliver positive results in the fight against discrimination. We very much hope that the proposed Commission will be given the necessary resources to enable it to lead the way in promoting equality, fostering better understanding between people, and challenging all forms of prejudice and injustice in our society,’ said Sir Iqbal Sacranie, Secretary-General of the MCB.
“Obviously there are issues of detail, such as its location and its structure, that need more careful thought to ensure we get it right. The MCB, alongside others, is ready to play its role in this discussion. But differences on details should not be allowed to get in the way of establishing the CEHR as presently envisaged by the Equality Bill”, added Sir Iqbal.
Sir Iqbal will also be raising this issue in his speech this weekend due to be delivered at the EXCEL conference centre to over twenty thousand people. He will be pointing out how existing equality institutions have failed to adequately cater for the needs of large sections of the minority communities in this country. British Muslims, who make up more than 35% of the ethnic minority communities in the UK, have benefited least from current race equality initiatives. Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities, who comprise 64% of the British Muslim population, continue to lag well behind in most major socio-economic indicators. Where present equality institutions have failed the Muslim community, the CEHR presents a new opportunity to get it right in the future.