Celebrating Black History Month in Barnet

This October marks the 35th Black History Month (BHM), a national awareness campaign which recognises and celebrates the contributions of Black people to the economic, cultural and political life in the UK.

“The theme for Black History Month this year is Time for Change: Action Not Words. In that spirit, we want to focus on ensuring we acknowledge and learn from the past, but also work to improve the future, through action, not just words.”,
Cllr Linda Lusingu.

Statement on Freedom of Religion and Belief

From the Faith Communities Forum
of the Inter Faith Network for the UK

This week, the UK Government is hosting an International Ministerial Conference on Freedom of Religion and Belief.  The focus of the Inter Faith Network for the UK is the United Kingdom. However, we welcome the Ministerial Conference and its delegates in the context of this work. Our vision is of a society where there is understanding of the diversity and richness of the faith communities in the UK and the contribution that they make; and where we live and work together with mutual respect and shared commitment to the common good.

The Inter Faith Network for the UK, the UK inter faith linking body, was established in 1987 and has worked since that time to support and encourage inter faith understanding and cooperation in the UK.  This has contributed in no small measure to the creating of the conditions in which freedom of religion and belief can flourish.  That freedom is not simply a matter of laws and conventions which ensure such freedom, vital though those are.  Freedom of religion and belief is also about freedom to practise as freely as those laws, and other rights, permit.

Sadly, freedom of religion and belief is sometimes truncated by conditions that constrain their ease of expression.  For example, for some communities the threat of hate crime and terrorist attack has meant their places of worship needing to operate with a high security.  There is also the threat of physical violence and verbal harassment which are daily fears for some within communities which are identifiable by faith or ethnicity, as hate crime figures consistently show.  Freedom might also be understood to be impinged upon where religion and belief are subject to misunderstanding and misrepresentation – with adherents repeatedly obliged to explain, correct and defend.

We recognise the complexity of life in a society where at times some rights are counterbalanced by others: the boundaries of those rights will always be subject to discussion, and, as necessary, adjudication.

Recourse to illegal actions, including violence, where there is disagreement should never be an option. It is vital that citizens have the opportunity to develop the skills and knowledge to navigate life together within a shared society where there will always be differences of view – including of religion and belief. That is part of the warp and weft of a thriving civil society which undergirds and supports mutual respect and shared commitment to the common good.

4 July 2022

Met Office Red Alert Warnings

As you’ll be aware the Met office has increased the weather warning to Red and therefore we have stood down some council services today.

The website has been updated and is the best place to check for up to date service impact information:https://www.barnet.gov.uk/news/information-about-storm-eunice

All non-essential visits and non-essential services that require travel or being outdoors have been stood down with business continuity plans being put in place.

Emergency tree response arrangements are in place and priority will be given to ‘critical’ roads and access to emergency service buildings.

If you need to report anything, e.g. fallen trees, these should be reported on 020 8359 2000.

For matters of extreme emergency where there may be immediate serious risk to life or limb please contact the relevant emergency services.

Passing of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

The BMFForum are saddened to hear of the passing of Prince Philip.

Our thoughts and condolences are with Her Majesty the Queen and all the Royal Family as well as the commonwealth family and the world which He served.
We join the country in mourning and will find a way of paying our full respects as a community in due course.
Esmond Rosen President AND the executive of BMFF