Australian Greens Anti-racism spokesperson Senator Mehreen Faruqi has said that a new report by the Australian Human Rights Commission has found that 4 in 5 Australian Muslims have experienced discrimination, and a similar proportion feel the Christchurch mosque attacks made them afraid for their community.
Senator Faruqi is the first Muslim woman elected to the Australian Senate.
Senator Faruqi said:
“This report makes for disturbing reading, but I have to say I am not surprised by its findings, and I expect many Muslims would say the same thing. The discrimination is very real and so are its consequences.
“In recent decades, Muslims have experienced substantial discrimination in Australia and have been on the receiving end of serious racism and bigotry in the community, the media and in politics.
“Most catastrophically, anti-Muslim hatred led an Australian man to murder 51 innocent Muslims in Christchurch two years ago. But we can see anti-Muslim hatred and intolerance throughout our community and we must fight it with everything we have.
“Australia urgently needs to recommit itself to anti-racism and fighting Islamophobia, especially in the face of a resurgent far-right. We need to invest in and roll-out a national anti-racism program, stronger laws on extremism and hate speech, and much better representation of people of colour in public life.
“It has not escaped me that this report has recommended better representation of Muslims in the Australian media in the same week it was revealed Channel Seven cast a woman with a history of toxic Islamophobia and racism in an upcoming TV series. This saga was a strong reminder of the sustained Islamophobia and racism in the Australian media,” she said.