‘Breaking barriers, confusing racists’ – The first female leader of the Muslim Council of Britain visited the city.

There is an Islamophobic trap that shows that Muslim women are oppressed and subjugated by men of faith. Zara Mohammed, the first female leader of the Muslim Council of Britain, hopes her appointment will help further reduce this derogatory stereotype.

At the age of 29, she has come to the forefront. MCBIt is the largest and most diverse organization for Muslim organizations in the country. She is the first woman to hold the post of Secretary-General, voted for by male-dominated voters from imams, mosques and community leaders across the country.

This week she is visiting mosques, schools and communities across Birmingham and Walsall as part of a listening exercise to help people understand the most pressing concerns and issues. He took the time to talk to Birmingham Live about the issues raised with him.

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At the top of the local priority list is the impact of the cost of living crisis on families already struggling in deprived areas. He said that the energy and collective spirit being shown by the local mosques to help the worst people was impressive.

“The cost of housing and poor housing really have an impact at the local level. As a community, we need to make sure our voices are heard. There is a lot of uncertainty and We need to empower the local people to speak, ”said Ms. Muhammad. Who has a Masters in Human Rights Law.

“It’s been great to see the amount of community work through food banks, youth delivery, education classes and tuition – the strength and spirit of the community is alive. Faith organizations were a lifeline for many during the epidemic. “If it weren’t for mosques, places of worship, churches and temples, they wouldn’t be here. I have a food bank in every mosque.”

But there are fears that current social, educational, employment and health inequalities will only get worse as the belt tightens. “Lack of representation in decision-making is a major issue that needs to be addressed,” he said.

He said the legacy of the Trojan Horse case – an allegation that it was an Islamic conspiracy to take over the city’s schools – was still having a profound effect locally. Ms Mohammed doubled the earlier calls by the Muslim Council of Britain for a public inquiry into the 2014 incident.

Zara Muhammad, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain

“One of the most fascinating things about our engagement so far has been the number of times the Trojan horse case has been raised, even in schools and those who are not directly involved. They told me how they are still affected by it. Have happened

“I asked people: ‘Are we still well?’ But he says the issue has ended, people have been devastated, it has left scars and people feel they have not received “justice”.

“I believe that part of the healing is to acknowledge that mistakes have been made and mistakes have been made. We certainly still insist that there should be a public inquiry. I can say that this is still happening in communities today. Has a profound effect, it was clear. It was not just a short story.

“Part of this healing process is about looking ahead and building trust. While it’s a challenge – things have moved on, some communities are still feeling the effects.”

He said hate crimes against Muslims were also a cause for concern and that it was a “massive problem” across the country.

As the organization’s first female leader and its public face, Ms. Mohammed said she wanted to be a positive role model for young girls and women, and to instill confidence in them that she too could be a leader. ۔

“My mandate comes from the majority of male voters – primarily imams and mosques. They gave a very strong message about what kind of leadership they want and their trust in me.

“They chose a 29-year-old Muslim woman from Glasgow to be the leader of this largest and most diverse Muslim umbrella group, and it is a witness for them. They made history, I did. Did not

“It’s also a sign of how our communities are changing. The diversity of representation and trust in women’s leadership is growing, although we still have a long way to go.”

He said that he has visited many male dominated places and organizations in his tour, which will continue till next week. He said that the reception was very warm. “People were really proud and happy with what the leadership team was doing. I think my character challenges a lot of impressions. People are amazed when they see me, because I’m younger than I am.” I see

“Externally, some people don’t believe that their ideas, their Islamophobic traps and stereotypes have been fundamentally crushed – because there’s a young woman here, really in a high position, a Muslim organizations. Faith organizations, “he added.

“It’s exciting. I hope to use this platform to inspire young girls and women, but also to make a difference in the role of women in my community and abroad.” We need to build trust in women, tell them what you can do. Be a Muslim woman and leader.

“Muslim women are the most disadvantaged in society when it comes to employment (a claim supported by research by the Parliamentary Equalities Select Committee). Social mobility is a major area of ​​concern for Muslim women.

“When you are financially strong, it gives you more choices, more options and more confidence. So there is a need to do something to strengthen Muslim women and increase their confidence and access to opportunities. ۔

“I have talked to a lot of corporate organizations and mosques and we are seeing this tidal change. Young Muslim women need strong role models in their lives so that they can explore possibilities, and I hope that There will be one. Role models, both men and women, and that’s an important factor. “

Founded in 1997, MCB has 500 member organizations including mosques, schools, charitable associations and professional networks. Its members represent a large segment of Britain’s diverse Muslim communities.

Ms. Mohammed, a training and development consultant, was selected for her new role last year. He got a majority of adjacent votes against Ajmal Masroor, an imam, teacher and broadcaster who was also contesting for the post.

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