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Parliamentary Debates and Questions

S5W-08279: Anas Sarwar (Glasgow)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 21 March 2017

To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S5O-00690 by Angela Constance on 23 February 2017 (Official Report, c. 2), in light of the barriers arising from Islamophobia and gender stereotyping, what steps is it taking to enable young Muslim women to participate in politics and society.

Answered by: Angela Constance 13 April 2017

I refer the member to the answer to question S5W-08278 on 13 April 2017 which addresses this question in part and is available on the Parliament’s website, the search facility for which can be found at: http://www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/28877.aspx

In addition, we are committed to tackling gender stereotyping in all its forms, and we recognise the importance of ensuring that young Muslim women are able to participate fully in society at all levels. We are taking a range of steps to advance gender equality and tackle violence against women, and a draft delivery plan for our Equally Safe strategy was published on 23 March setting out ambitious steps in this area.

The Scottish Government is funding Amina £111,534 and Council of Ethnic Minority Voluntary Organisations Scotland (CEMVO) with funding of £62,000 for 2016/17. CEMVO is establishing a minority ethnic Women’s network and aiming to hold a number of related events in 2017 to link in to the Race Equality Framework (REF) actions. The first event was held on 22 February, with over 90 women attending. As well as looking at the vision, purpose and structure of a possible network for Minority Ethnic women, discussion took place on employability issues, with potential solutions identified. Additionally over the course of 2017 we will organise a series of Themed Roundtables linked to REF themes involving policy officials with key experts from a range of statutory and third sector organisations and academia. One of these Roundtable events will focus on employability and, amongst other sources, will consider the feedback gathered at the minority ethnic women’s network event.

Amina works to promote equality for Muslim Women by tackling prejudice, hate crime and inspiring community cohesion. Amina’s Building Bridges project focuses on Muslim, Minority Ethnic women in Dundee to provide information and support on a range of areas from mental wellbeing to registering to vote. Building confidence and participation that strengthens Muslim, Minority Ethnic women of all backgrounds to fulfil their potential and participate fully.