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Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Standing together to reassure local communities


Faith, multi-cultural groups and Cheshire East Council are standing together to support all communities in the borough and reinforce every resident’s right to live in safety and peace and be able to exercise their religious beliefs and faith.

The public commitment follows a terror incident in which one person died and 11 people were injured, when a van was driven into a crowd of Muslim worshippers in Finsbury Park, north London, in the early hours of June 19. A 47-year-old man was arrested and later charged with attempted murder and terrorism-related offences.

Councillor Paul Bates, cabinet member for finance and communities, said: “Every resident in Cheshire East has the right to feel safe as they practise their faith and go about their normal daily lives.

“We, as a whole community, stand together, shoulder to shoulder, in these difficult times as we try to come to terms with the shock, grief and implications of recent tragic events. We should draw strength, moreover, from the knowledge that what unites us is greater than that which divides.

“We have always worked closely with voluntary, community and faith groups across the borough and always will. We are currently planning a major multi-faith event in November, and welcome all individuals and groups who wish to attend and help keep our communities strong and connected.”

The Rev Jennie Wakefield, chairperson of Churches Together in Crewe, spoke on behalf of faith leaders across Crewe and said: “As faith leaders from across Crewe, we offer our prayers for all those who have been bereaved, injured or affected by the recent attacks in Manchester and London.

“We are united in our commitment to upholding the rights of all people to live their lives and peaceably exercise their faith, free from the fear of violence, intimidation or attack.

“We stand with the wider community in Crewe, both today and into the future, reaffirming our shared values of peace, fellowship, respect and tolerance.”

Taurainashe Manonge, of South Cheshire Multi-Cultural Forum, said: “We would like to affirm that all our members are committed to uphold and encourage principles that foster peace and community togetherness – such as charity, respect, honour, neighbourliness and the right to dignity.

“We believe our communities should be beacons of hope and not strife. At a time where grief, fear and anger can possibly undo the peace in our communities, we would like to stand with all those who are directly or indirectly affected by these tragic events.”

If you would like to find out more about our community work at Cheshire East Council, please contact our communities and partnerships team by phone on 01270 685880 or email: partnerships@cheshireeast.gov.uk

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