Last Thursday, during Business Questions, I marked Islamophobia Awareness Month by asking the Leader of the House, Penny Mordaunt, for an update on the Government’s work on tackling Islamophobia.

With Islamophobic incidents surpassing 600% since October, it is crucial that that representatives of all sectors of society, especially the Government, commit to tackling Islamophobia. But this can only be achieved by firstly defining the problem first.

Five years ago, the APPG on British Muslims published its definition of Islamophobia which has been adopted by community groups, academics, trade unions and many councils. It has also been adopted by every major political party but was rejected by the Conservative Party.

Four years ago, the Government announced that it would seek to establish its own definition of Islamophobia. A few days before Islamophobia Awareness Month last year, the Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Secretary, Michael Gove, quietly confirmed no work on Islamophobia would be progressed. It is clear that this Government is simply not interested in safeguarding British Muslim communities from discrimination and heinous hate crimes, which we have seen a worrying spike in recently.

Fighting Islamophobia has been a priority for me throughout my career and I will continue to press the Government on this matter as well as raise awareness about the detrimental effects of Islamophobia on society. British Muslims deserve the right to live, work and practice their religion freely without fear of violence or discrimination, the Government must do more.

You can read my full question to the Leader of the House and her response here, or watch the clip here.

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