We were contacted today, (25/02/13), by one of the Executive Committee Members of a mosque in Lancashire. Whilst attending morning prayers, worshippers came across paint daubed over the main door leading to the mosque or masjid. Along with the paint that had been daubed on the entrance, there were tomatoes, yoghurt tubs and other refuse like material that had been left at the entrance. Clearly, someone thought that the mosque deserved to be treated with such disdain which shocked worshippers who simply came for their morning prayers.
The diligent Executive Committee Member of this mosque called the Police and logged the incident as a faith hate crime and mentioned that this was the first time that there has been an attack on the mosque in over 20 years of the mosque’s existence.
If your mosque has suffered such an incident, do contact 101 and ask for the Police to log the incident and to take a statement from you. We can also help in the process and after contacting the police, you may contact us since we can provide the following:
– An avenue through which we can collect further evidence such as witness statements. The more evidence collected, the greater the likelihood of an arrest;
– Through the Securing Mosques Programme we can work with the local force to assess the security vulnerabilities of your local mosque; we can also look to work with local private sector companies who may be willing to donate camera equipment to secure the exterior of the mosque from vandalism and hate crimes;
– We can provide volunteers for large scale events that the mosque may be holding who can work with local residents and allay fears, traffic and other concerns which residents may have. This is sometimes the cause of local tensions which can be eased with good effective communication,
– We can also work with mosque executive committee members in drafting a security strategy for mosques.
The services listed above are free. Financial constraints are therefore NOT a barrier and we voice again the need for mosques to be pro-active regarding their security. If hate incidents and crimes are not reported in, the perpetrator will simply become eboldened and evidence shows that they may commit further and more violent crimes.