Mr Coppinger met with local officers and the congregation at Farooz E Azam mosque in Hartington Road, Stockton.
Cleveland’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Barry Coppinger, has pledged to tackle all forms of religious hate crime as part of his focus on tackling these issues during National Hate Crime Awareness Week.
Mr Coppinger met with the congregation at Farooz E Azam mosque in Hartington Road, Stockton, to discuss their concerns around general community safety and in particular any experiences they have had of being targeted due to their religious beliefs.
Mr Coppinger said: “I have recently commissioned Media Cultured CIC, an education and training company, to deliver a pilot programme of teacher training for 10 schools across Cleveland, focusing on delivering positive messages on the rich and diverse nature of modern day society and on combatting religious based intolerance including so called ‘Islamophobia.’
“In today’s society it is completely unacceptable that people can be targeted due to their religious beliefs, and with the current issues internationally around extremism it becomes increasingly important that as a society we work together to combat the misguided beliefs of a small minority, and don’t allow their activities to disrupt the solid foundation of our local communities.
“I am delighted to say that in general Cleveland is a tolerant and accepting place to live and work, and my discussions with members of the community today have reaffirmed this, however we can never be complacent, and it would be naive to suggest that intolerant attitudes don’t exist.
“Through this pilot education programme we are hoping to challenge such attitudes from a young age and ensure that the communities of tomorrow celebrate their diversity and strive together for community cohesion.”
Amjid Khazir, Director of Media Cultured CIC added: “Our organisation is dedicated to promoting integration and social cohesion, working with schools across Teesside, and with the support of Cleveland’s Police and Crime Commissioner we hope to go a long way in achieving those aims."
For more information on the Media Cultured CIC workshops visit www.mediacultured.org or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted on Tuesday 13th October 2015