I would like to update hon. Members on the work of my Department on integration. We are committed to confronting and challenging extremism in all its forms, tackling the violence and hatred that seeks to create division. We are championing what unites our country across class, colour and creed, and we are standing up for and supporting British values.
Our broad approach is laid out in the Government’s integration strategy, published in February 2012, which can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/creating-the-conditions-for-a-more-integrated-society
As of December 2014, current integration projects and activities include:
Action to provide a platform for young people to share positive stories about integration. Sixty young people are being trained as journalists and will produce at least 120 stories and 2 million opportunities to view by end of June 2015.
Anne Frank Trust UK
Funding will enable the trust to deliver its programme to 35,000 young people in London and the west Midlands by July 2015 to challenge UK prejudice and reduce hatred, encouraging people to embrace positive attitudes, responsibility and respect for others.
Arts Council—Arts in the community
Work will engage five areas around England—Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Burnley and potentially Thurrock—to improve their art/cultural provision to increase participation by bringing in more people through more activities. Project match funded with Arts Council England and local authorities.
Arts Council Enterprise libraries
Supporting library projects in 16 locations to develop business and intellectual property centres across the country. Project match funded with Arts Council England and the British Library.
The project supports a scholarship scheme at the University of West London, and raises the profile of the sector through the Mastara Chef campaign. Our aim is that young people from different backgrounds will view the Asian cuisine industry as offering exciting and rewarding careers, increasing opportunities for social mobility and underlining the important place which Asian cuisine occupies in modern Britain.
Support to Cornish Language Partnership for the development and promotion of the Cornish language.
English language match funding for European integration fund funded projects
DCLG match funded three community-based English language projects supported by the European integration fund to teach English and integration skills in Slough, Tower Hamlets and Bradford.
English language community-based programme
Support for six projects providing community-based English language tuition to 24,000 isolated people in selected target areas.
Enterprise Challenge Sheffield
Extension of Enterprise Challenge to include engagement with and integration of Roma.
Expanding a suite of integration projects into key areas identified by the extremism taskforce.
Female genital mutilation and honour-based violence—including forced marriage: community-led projects
Funding 15 community projects across the country to deliver community engagement work to prevent female genital mutilation and other forms of honour-based violence, including forced marriage.
Female genital mutilation/forced marriage champions network
Funding three organisations to recruit community champions to lead a local response to raising awareness of and tackling female genital mutilation and forced marriage
Flying the flag
Ongoing support for championing the flying of local and national flags, and working with the Flag Institute to encourage more local communities to create their own local flags.
A commission of inquiry to investigate how best to commemorate and teach future generations about the holocaust.
Holocaust memorial day
Funding the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust to deliver the UK’s annual commemoration of Holocaust memorial day and to support its work with schools and local communities throughout the year to raise awareness and deliver local events.
Supporting an independent charity providing information that is as up-to-date and reliable as possible about cults and unconventional movements.
Integration through sport
DCLG contribution to Sport England’s community sport activation fund to sport support integration-focused sport projects.
Inter Faith Network
A charity that links up and resources local and national inter-faith bodies and faith umbrella bodies and runs the annual inter-faith week activities.
National community tensions team
DCLG contribution to the team which carries out a national assessment of community tension on a weekly basis and provides a resource on the impact of public order, counter-terrorism and other extremist activity on communities.
Campaign bringing together diverse faith communities in local neighbourhoods through grants to local projects and programmes of training for clergy, youth leaders and community activists.
Opening doors partnership comprising Black Training and Enterprise Group, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, Asian Business Initiative and PJ’s Community Services to establish an enterprise development programme to train young unemployed and socially disadvantaged people in Haringey, Brent and Croydon to be entrepreneurs.
Our Big Gig
Delivery of a national mass-participation musical event from 11-13 July, together with targeted activity in selected areas over a longer period, with the aim of bringing diverse communities together and encouraging local participation in music on a sustained basis.
Post-holocaust issues envoy
To support the work of the post-holocaust issues envoy to represent the UK in international fora on restitution and addressing anti-Semitism.
Post Office community enterprise fund
Enhancing the role of post offices as community hubs and providers of other services, such as support for small businesses, by running a joint competition to identify and support 25 innovative community-led schemes.
Programme of activities to raise awareness of the Srebrenica genocide, to teach the consequences of hatred and intolerance through visits to Bosnia, commemoration events around 11 July, and education packs.
Schools linking network
Unlocking talent and potential scheme to bring together pupils from different backgrounds, provide them with business mentors and work experience opportunities, and enable the most committed pupils to go on to establish new enterprises.
Social media workshops
Four social media workshops were held in London, Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds. We worked in conjunction with Home Office research information and communication unit and Breakthrough Media. The aim was to improve the social media capacity of community organisations in each area in promoting positive narratives and case studies.
The Big Iftar
Creating a mass movement through a diverse set of Iftar activities during Ramadan in mosques, synagogues, other places of worship and community centres around the country for Muslim communities to come together to share Iftar with their non-Muslim neighbours, highlighting the commonalities between communities, rather than the differences.
Together in service
A two-year programme of faith-based social action building on the success of A Year of Service (2012). Every month the social action of a different faith community is celebrated and new multi-faith projects encouraged. The project is supported by the together in service fellowship of willing volunteers and a small grants fund to kick-start new inter-faith projects.
World war one battlefields visit
Support to enable two children and one teacher from every English state-aided school to visit world war one battlefields—joint with the Department for Education.
World war one “Last Post” campaign
Encouraging communities to engage and come together through local music events, which include playing the “Last Post” on any instrument.
World war one—Remember world war one
A mass initiative to engage individuals, groups and communities in England to volunteer 100 minutes of their time to world war one related activity.
World war one—Show and tell
Online resource for communities, which includes libraries and local historical societies, to work with local areas to identify first world war stories and artefacts.
World war one—VC grave restoration project
Grave restoration campaign to restore the graves of world war one recipients who are buried in the UK but not under the care of the Restoration Project Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
World war one—Victoria Cross paving stones
Project to commemorate world war one Victoria Cross recipients with a paving stone across the country at their birth place or at the National Memorial Arboretum (Staffordshire) for overseas-born Victoria Cross recipients.
World war one—Woking Peace Garden
A project which will use the Woking Peace Garden as a focal point for world war one commemoration events and educational visits, events and activities to raise awareness of the contribution of Commonwealth servicemen to world war one.
The project aims to create opportunities for 10,800 young people in 400 newly established units run by 2,700 volunteers.
Below are lists of examples of projects and activities we have previously supported—it is not a comprehensive list of every single integration activity or programme.
A Year of Service
A series of volunteering events, held by nine different faith communities in turn throughout the year in 2012, linked to festivals or special days to encourage themed social action, such as feeding the poor or improving the local environment.
Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation perpetuity fund
Contribution to ensure the ongoing restoration and preservation of Auschwitz- Birkenau.
Bad Arolsen archive Wiener Library
Funded the Wiener Library to get a copy of the international tracing service archive to help UK citizens trace what happened to their relatives during Nazi persecution across Europe.
DCLG and Government Equalities Office jointly provided grant in 2012-13 and 2013-14 on assessing prejudice on the basis of caste among Hindus and Sikhs.
Report representing the conclusions of around 40 Muslim scholars, academics and other participants who took part in the project’s symposia to discuss and consider what it means to be a Muslim living in modern Britain.
Enterprise business connectors
Project run by Business in the Community to help small businesses in Haringey, Salford, Tower Hamlets, Nottingham, Liverpool and Bristol to survive and to grow, and be able to provide local employment, goods and services in some of the most disadvantaged communities through support from large businesses. Secondees from large businesses to be placed in these areas to act as “business connectors” to facilitate interactions.
A national competition run by Mosaic, part of the Prince’s Trust, that aims to inspire knowledge and enthusiasm about business among young people. School teams are supported by specialist business mentors to compete through an online business game. The project was match funded with Apax Foundation.
English language training
Funding additional English language provision for learners with no, or extremely poor, levels of spoken English, who are not in or actively seeking employment, and who are unable to afford course fees.
Faith through a lens
As part of A Year of Service we teamed up with an existing national photo competition—faith through a lens—to have a special category on A Year of Service to both celebrate and act as a record of the volunteering activities undertaken.
Faith-based Regeneration Network
Grant to support faith-based organisations with a focus on community development, regeneration and social action.
Issuing guidance to councils to discourage the translation of documents into foreign languages, to help encourage English language learning and strengthen integration of those who do not speak English into mainstream British society.
Future for Youth
Match-funding to the Future for Youth foundation to run a pathfinder project in Salford to support young people to move into employment, training or education.
Funding to help address the resource pressures on Rushmoor borough council and support other councils with large numbers of retired Gurkhas to manage the integration of retired veterans and their families.
To enthuse secondary age pupils (13-14) about the possibility of a career in industry—engineering, manufacturing, etc. Pupils to undertake an eight-week course with a local industrial firm, learning about the sector and the career options it offers.
Support to Inter-faith Youth Trust to deliver a wide range of projects and activities focused on engaging young people from different faiths and encouraging faith-based social action.
Funded the Jewish Museum work with 12 schools in the London area to improve understanding of the Jewish way of life and to address casual anti-Semitism in schools.
National Citizens Service—Young advisers
Project to deliver young advisors training to between 150-200 young people in 2011-12 and up to a further 375-500 in 2012-13.
National special interest group on the English Defence League
Blackburn and Luton-led national special interest group to share best practice between councils and other partners in countering English Defence League activity.
Operation black vote
One off transitional funding to enable the organisation to develop a sustainable business model.
Searchlight Education Trust—English Defence League project
Volunteer-led community groups organising local news-sheets and community events to generate positive local identities in four areas vulnerable to English Defence League activity.
Show racism the red card—English Defence League project
Workshops for young people aged 11-18 to help them reject the narratives of groups like the English Defence League.
Society of Editors—addressing online hate crime
A moderation guide for user-generated content.
Supported town hall prayers
Encouraging councils to use their general power of competence under the Localism Act to hold prayers at the start of council meetings if they wish.
Tell MAMA—measuring anti-Muslim attacks
Initial start-up grant during 2011-13 to help establish reporting mechanisms and a system that offers advice and support to victims of anti-Muslim attacks and hatred.
The Big Jubilee lunch
DCLG funding enabled the Eden Project to provide targeted support to 20 hard to reach areas where there had been little or no participation in the Big Lunch to date in the run up to the Big Jubilee lunch in 2012 and the Big Lunch 2013.
The Jubilee hour
DCLG support for a campaign to encourage people to volunteer for 60 minutes in recognition of the Queen’s diamond jubilee. Aim to encourage community involvement and to engender long-term volunteering activity.
True Vision—Cross-Government hate crime programme
Support for the online hate crime reporting portal, which includes online reporting of hate crime on the internet and best practice.
World war one—Curzon Institute
This project sought through a series of lectures, films and educational materials to inform communities of the role of Commonwealth nations in securing allied victory in the first world war.
This year, Ministers have also led a series of road shows to engage directly with the public to inform them about our integration projects and cross-Government work tackling extremism and hate crime. To accompany these road shows DCLG produced infographics summarising our broader integration work—rather than just funding projects. These include projects led by other Government Departments. They are available online at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ communitiesuk/sets/72157644380501531/
We continue to implement the actions of the extremism taskforce and are currently working with the Home Office, who are leading on the Government’s new extremism strategy. We will also shortly be publishing a comprehensive report on the Government’s work on tackling anti-Semitism
Community Rights and Big Society
Our work on integration is also complemented by our Big Society and Community Rights programmes. The table below shows the organisations which are funded by my Department as part of our Big Society and Community Rights programmes in the current financial year. Some provide direct support and grants to community groups who wish to exercise their community rights or take control of decisions, services or assets in their areas; other projects are delivered through contracts with external suppliers.
Big Society and Community Rights Projects
Community Ownership and Management of Assets Programme
Community Right to Challenge Programme
Social Investment Business (contract)
10 contracts—each supporting a separate local authority, working with councils to sort delivery via voluntary sector, mutual and social enterprise
Our Place support—including support for “emerging potential” areas and parish councils
Our Place implementation evaluation
Castle Vale—holding funding on behalf of the Balsall Heath Forum
Support for new parish councils
National Association of Local Councils; County Associations of Local Councils
Quality Councils Scheme
National Association of Local Councils
Certificate in Local Council Administration Qualification
Society of Local Council Clerks
Sustainable Communities Act—funding for selector
Local Government Association and National Association of Local Councils
Community Shares Unit
The Co-operatives Advice Line
Diversification of community pubs projects
Pub is the Hub
Just Act—supporting community projects
Community Development Foundation
Nottingham North Rebalancing Project
Nottingham Community and Voluntary Service
Localism Alliance—work to encourage take of community rights in eight deprived areas in England
Civic Voice, Campaign for Real Ale, Supporters Direct and Theatres Trust—Civic Voice will hold the grant on behalf of the other members
Over the 2011-15 spending review period, DCLG was initially expected to spend £43 million on supporting integration projects; since 2010 we have already spent £45 million, and the current estimates are that we will be close to £50 million by March 2015.
Estimated expenditure (£m)2011-122012-132013-142014-15Integration11.014.212.811.9
This spending is in addition to £150 million that has been allocated by the Home Office for the revised Prevent programme since 2011.
The Home Office refocused the Prevent strategy in 2011 to ensure that resources were better targeted. Prevent funding reflects the reassessed priorities following the 2011 Prevent review. Resources are prioritised according to the risk to national security.
But spending money wisely is more important than the quantity of funding. The last Administration’s Prevent strategy was widely criticised and discredited, not least in using councils to “spy” on Muslim communities in a completely counter-productive way; failing to keep track of how taxpayers’ money was spent; insufficient checks on funding going to extremist groups; and confusing work on cohesion with counter-terrorism.
In contrast to the last Administration, we have moved away from supporting separate communities’ identities—“single group funding”—as it undermines integration. We promote British values including equality of all before the law and a belief in democracy. We will not fund or engage with groups which promote violent or non-violent extremism.
Termination of funding
In addition to the projects listed above, as an action which stemmed from the extremism taskforce, my department initiated the faith minorities in action project—designed to encourage integration by promoting inter-faith work, the role of women in faith, tackling youth crime, and also to provide child protection training. The Muslim Charities Forum was awarded this contract.
However, following a formal review of the project, which included examination of allegations made in the press, and of the organisation’s continued poor performance in delivering against agreed objectives, I have taken the decision to terminate its funding. The Muslim Charities Forum has failed to reassure us that they have robust measures in place to investigate and challenge their members. Concerns have also been raised about events held by member organisations, at which individuals with extremist views have been invited to speak. This has undermined their work and means they are no longer able to deliver on the faith minorities in action objectives.
We are determined that faith institutions should have the support they require to carry out their vital work. Faith institutions play a key role in communities. They provide support and moral leadership and a sense of community all around the country. Well-run collaborative faith institutions can provide a bulwark against extremism by providing a local source of identity, a place to temper views through discussion, and a first point of call for concerns individuals may have. We will shortly launch a new call for applications from organisations able to work in collaboration with faith groups and to deliver effective support.
Similarly, my Department has asked Faith Action, who deliver English language training to facilitate social integration, to cease their funding of Islamic Help as part of their project. This decision stems from Islamic Help’s recent invitation to an individual with extremist views to speak at one of their events.
I hope this action illustrates our resolve to cease funding any organisation that supports or is linked to individuals who fuel hatred, division and violence. We will fund only those programmes and organisations that actively encourage integration and uphold fundamental British values.