Australian Greens Anti-racism spokesperson Senator Mehreen Faruqi has said that the latest Islamophobia in Australia report, released today, reveals the horrifying face of Islamophobia and the urgent need for government to tackle anti-Muslim racism and hatred.
Senator Faruqi, who is the only Muslim in the Australian Senate, said:
“Islamophobia in this country is widespread, it is virulent, and it is on the rise.
“In the three years since Christchurch, the federal government has not lifted a finger to tackle Islamophobia and racism in this country.
“The Liberals have stood by while Muslims in Australia are abused, attacked and hated on. They just don’t give a damn about us.
“The killing of 51 Muslims in Christchurch should have woken them up to the reality of Islamophobia, but despite calls to change course and take strong action they decided to ignore this everyday reality of racism for hundreds of thousands of people.
“This report shows, yet again, that Muslims are bearing the brunt of vicious discrimination and hatred which has been fomented by politicians, the media and online communities.
“Islamophobia is highly gendered with Muslim women the common targets of hateful and bigoted attacks. How many times do we have to be abused before this government will take action?
“The toxicity and dangers of racism and Islamophobia have completely escaped the consciousness of this government made up mostly of white men who have never faced its consequences.
“The ‘othering’ of Muslims and Islamophobia need to be tackled by the political leadership. There must be a national conversation and reckoning with the fact that the Christchurch mosque killer was an Australian man.
“There must be concrete responses to Islamophobia. Enough is enough. Politicians must take responsibility and act.
“We urgently need dedicated funding for anti-racism initiatives and a coordinated plan to tackle the far-right. We need proper data collection on hate crimes and racial discrimination and we need to strengthen and enforce hate speech laws.
“Everyone who cares about human rights and social justice in this country should read this report and demand that the government take immediate action.”