We are committed to protecting places of worship from hate crimes through the places of worship protected security scheme. The funding for next year, at £3.2 million, is an uplift of nearly double the amount awarded last year. A public consultation on providing greater protection from hate crime for places of worship closed on 28 June. We are reviewing the responses and will respond in due course.
There is a balance to be struck between worshipping openly and being provided with adequate security. Will the Minister say what success the Government’s places of worship protective security funding scheme has had in achieving that balance?
Very much so. I can assure my hon. Friend that the places of worship protective security funding scheme has been designed so that each place of worship can apply for practical security measures that suit their individual needs, ranging from CCTV to alarm systems. This allows each place of worship to remain open and accessible for worshippers, while providing greater security. We want to ensure that this scheme listens to worshippers and their communities when seeking to achieve the balance to which he rightly refers.