North Yorkshire Police back plans for £5million extra funding to safeguard mosques and places of worship

Sajid Javid has announced an extra 5million funding for security for places of worship.
Sajid Javid has announced an extra 5million funding for security for places of worship.
0
Have your say

North Yorkshire Police Deputy Chief Constable Phil Cain has promised to make places of worship aware that new government funding is available for them.

The Home Office announced on Tuesday funding for next year’s places of worship protective security has been to £1.6 million, double the amount awarded last year, to reassure communities and safeguard mosques and other places of worship.

In addition a new £5 million fund will be opened to provide security training.

The funding boost, announced in a written ministerial statement, comes after the terror attack in Christchurch claimed the lives of 50 people and injured 40 more.

Following the incident, police presence was stepped up at mosques across the UK to reassure communities fearful of similar attacks.

READ MORE: Christchurch mosque shootings: Police in Yorkshire step up mosque patrols

DCC Phil Cain tweeted: "Home secretary announces increased funding available for security at places of worship.

"North Yorkshire Police Neighbourhood Teams will ensure our places of worship are made aware."

The places of worship fund, established in 2016 as part of the government’s hate crime action plan, provides financial support for physical protective security such as fencing, lighting and CCTV.

Government previously committed funding of £2.4 million over 3 years.

So far, more than a third of grants under the places of Worship Protective Funding scheme have been awarded to mosques.

- > Victim managed to run away after being stabbed in back during attempted robbery in Huddersfield

Places of worship, including mosques, will also benefit from a new £5 million fund over 3 years to provide protective security training building on some of the positive work already happening in communities.

This is in recognition that physical protective security is only part of the solution and institutions, their staff, and volunteers need to have security understanding to ensure the protective measures work effectively.

The Home Secretary Sajid Javid said: "The horrific events in New Zealand are a direct attack on the values of tolerance and freedom of worship that unite us all.

"Nobody should ever fear persecution of their faith and it’s vital we stand together to reject those who seek to spread hatred and divide us.

"I know many Muslim communities are feeling vulnerable and anxious. But they should seek comfort from knowing we are doing everything to tackle hate and extremism.

"That’s why we are doubling next year’s places of worship fund - providing physical protection as well as peace of mind."

The government will also open a consultation with faith representatives and organisations including the Anti-Muslim Hatred Working Group, Tell MAMA and the Independent Advisory Group, on improvements to existing policy to protect faith communities.

To increase uptake in the fund and ensure it reaches those most vulnerable to hate crime, the bidding process will also be simplified so organisations no longer have to prove they have previously experienced a hate crime incident directly.