Together with some colleague candidates for the May elections, I attended an interesting Zoom call last week which was attended by some Muslim community leaders, including the imams from the Purley & Central mosques.
I was shocked to hear that some Muslim women who are merely going about their daily lives are harassed on the streets, particularly if they are wearing the hijab, to such an extent that some are afraid even to leave their homes. This becomes a vicious circle, because if they stay at home, then they can't gain access to sources of support.
For a start, religious harassment is a crime, so it should be immediately reported as it happens to the police via 999, or 101 if you are reporting an incident that happened earlier in the day. Alternatively, victims or their friends can report non-urgent incidents by email to the relevant Safer Neighbourhood Team for their ward, or to your local councillor who will be pleased to pass it on. And then there's social media, though that can sometimes cause more harm than good.
Mosques and other religious organisation will continue to engage with the police through "a cuppa with a copper" and other initiatives - again, please talk to your local councillor.
Cllr Simon Brew