The UK Labour may be facing a new crisis on top of the enduring anti-Semitism scandal, as more than half of party’s Muslims do not believe its leadership is able to deal with the allegedly rampant Islamophobia, a survey has found.
The new research was released by the Labour Muslim Network (LMN) on Saturday, focused on the issues Muslim members of the party have experienced. While Muslim representation in Labour is estimated to be between 10,000 to 20,000, the survey was based on answers of 422 valid respondents.
The LMN has discovered that 29 percent of respondents “have directly experienced Islamophobia” within the party. The number of those who “witnessed” such discrimination turned out to be even higher, measuring well over 37 percent. At the same time, less than 9 percent of all respondents have ever reported such incidents through the party’s internal complaints procedure – and only a fraction of those were somewhat “satisfied”
The surveyed party members did not show much trust in the Labour leadership’s ability to tackle the Islamophobia issue. Only 26 percent were more or less convinced it could do it “effectively,” while further 55 percent thought the party’s leaders were utterly incompetent in this domain.
Moreover, only 17 percent of respondents said the party takes this discriminatory behavior seriously – and 33 percent said it was “somewhat” serious about it. Nearly 44 percent of surveyed members did not believe the issue of Islamophobia is taken seriously at all.
The survey was conducted in July and August this year, signaling that the change in party’s leadership did not bring it more trust from its minority members. Under Labour’s previous leader, Jeremy Corbyn, the party was plagued by assorted anti-Semitism scandals, which, along with a botched 2019 general election bid, contributed to his resignation this May and Keir Starmer taking the reigns.
Corbyn was ultimately suspended from the party late in October after he refused to accept all the findings in a report by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) on anti-Semitism within the party. The politician dismissed the suspension as a “political intervention” against him and vowed to challenge it.
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