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NSW Greens MPs call on political leaders to engage Muslims and wider community to address root causes that lead to violence

NSW Greens MPs Dr Mehreen Faruqi MLC and Senator Lee Rhiannon have called on the NSW Government and Australian government to engage widely and address root causes that lead to violence in response to the recent tragic shooting at Parramatta.

Dr Mehreen Faruqi MLC, Greens NSW spokesperson for Multiculturalism and the sole Muslim woman MP in NSW, said:

“If our aim is to build a harmonious, accepting and peaceful society, we must investigate and address root causes that lead young people down this dangerous path to violence, and not implement just band-aid solutions.

“What happened in Parramatta was a tragic and shocking crime, and the police must complete a full investigation. But we cannot allow the event to facilitate further isolation of Muslim Australians and divide our society.

“It’s time to have a different conversation – one that explores deeper structural issues of injustice and disadvantage. This conversation must engage with the diverse Muslim community, as well as the whole community, especially young people,” Dr Faruqi said.

Senator Lee Rhiannon, Australian Greens Senator for NSW, said:

“Migrants, young people, and Western Sydney residents are all overrepresented in unemployment statistics. When you combine those factors, you have a generation of young people who have grown up in a society where regular jobs were not available, nor where their families’ community contributions were valued.

“In the aftermath of the shooting at Parramatta, Prime Minister Turnbull committed to defending multicultural Australia and called for calm and mutual respect. Now he must put these words into practice and look at the economic and social factors that lead to acts of violence.

“Research on the 2011 Census data reveals that Muslim Australians continue to experience disadvantage because of their socioeconomic position.

“Further alienating the Muslim community, especially youth, is definitely not the solution to what is being called ‘radicalisation’. For any response to be meaningful, young Muslims need to be engaged right from the start in a useful way and their concerns and grievances given priority,” Senator Rhiannon said.


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