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Hope Comes To Brent

posted by: Owen Jones | on: Friday, 19 December 2014, 16:35


I think it is safe to say that Brent has bundles of talent.

From the dances moves of the Brent Punjabi Association to the amazing voices of the NGIM Choir and not to forget the great choice in food donations!

The event that took place on December 13th was a grassroots community event which succeeded in beginning the process of celebrating, strengthening and embracing the diversity of Brent.

The event was organised in direct response to feelings aired at a HOPE not hate community meeting. People expressed the fact that Brent was multicultural but fragmented and a place where diverse groups did not see the benefits of integrating.

To this end it brought me great joy to see the event begin to cut across passive divisions. This was showcased in the acts of individuals walking across to introduce themselves to other organisation, exchanging details and spontaneously feeling compelled to share their story in light of others sharing theirs.

What was achieved in that Church Hall is a microcosm of what HOPE not hate aim to achieve within Brent at large. It was music to my ears to when Mrs Field asked what was next and I responded with…Mobilisation!

 Posted: 19 Dec 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Festive Fun in Thurrock

posted by: Owen Jones | on: Wednesday, 17 December 2014, 17:08


Saturday 13th December saw the Salvation Army in Grays host Thurrock TOGETHER’s festive event. The gathering attracted around 60 people from all over the area who came from a wide range of backgrounds. United together over food, fun and music, the event was a celebration of the wonderful things that this diverse local community has to offer.

The theme of the event was HOPE and the centrepiece was a HOPE wall decorated by local children’s groups throughout the week and at the event. They were able to put their stamp on what HOPE meant to them using their own creativity and plenty of glitter. It was wonderful to see a diverse range of people of different ages, religious and cultural backgrounds enjoying each other’s company. The highlight of the event was 14 year old Anna- Marie Childs and the Chaffords’ Voice Choir delighting us with a rendition of ‘Hallelujah’. It typified what the event was about: coming together at a special time and showcasing with pride everything that the community has to offer.

With everyone delighted to be sharing food, bringing along their family and asking more about what they could do to promote HOPE in the community, the event was a great success and proof of what a united community in Thurrock looks and sounds like.

For more information on how to get involved in Thurrock contact: Thurrock@hopenothate.org.uk

 Posted: 17 Dec 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Cardiff Students: “Don’t Let Them Drown”

posted by: Owen Jones | on: Wednesday, 17 December 2014, 16:27


The recent government agreement to no longer fund search and rescue operations on the Mediterranean is incoherent as immigration policy, morally bankrupt, and a clear capitulation to the anti-immigration politics of fear.

Drown an immigrant to save an immigrant goes the line. If more people die, less people will be willing to risk their lives.

On a cold and bright December morn, students at Cardiff University arrived on campus to raise awareness among their fellow students and make their voices heard – We must not let people drown.

HOPE not hate students from Cardiff and beyond marched a ceremonial dingy up to the steps of the Student Union, with fanfare and flowers laid in memory of those that had fallen in the past year. In a cool half hour students collected 150 signatures. By the end of the week, this petition had reached the local MPs office.

The week provided a glimpse at how fast things can go when a group of people from all faiths, backgrounds, cities, towns and nations are organized around a common issue.

In one week in December 2014, students came together to tell their politicians what they are against. The challenge for 2015 will be articulating together what we are for.

“Our first demonstration for the ‘Don’t Let Them Drown Campaign’ was really successful, very creative and a lot of fun. Seeing students from a number of different Colleges and Universities come together to tackle one issue was very inspiring.” – Tess, Cardiff University HOPE not hate Society President

 Posted: 17 Dec 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Joy to the world

posted by: Owen Jones | on: Tuesday, 16 December 2014, 11:50


Glittering frost carpeted Dudley for “Joy to the World”, the Castle and Priory Regeneration Board Christmas event supported by HOPE not hate. The event brought together three estates in the area- Priory and Wren’s Nest estates, which historically have had an estranged relationship, and residents from new development in North Priory, Friars Gate- to celebrate peace. The day was themed upon the Christmas Truce, to mark its centenary, and to represent the union and friendship between opposing sides in difficult times.

The day began at Community house on the new Friar’s Gate, where children wrote messages of hope and peace for the new year, which were hidden inside baubles, decorated with sparkles and festive stickers. Carols from around the world played and we reflected on the relevance of the Christmas truce for our friends, families and community. In the pinkish winter light, we walked together to St Francis’ Church and warmed up with turkey baps and mince pies!

Children were entertained with lantern making and Christmas crafts, whilst everyone enjoyed the food. We then entered the Church to hang our messages of peace and baubles on the tree, and to hear messages of love, joy and hope from other places around the world. Following a beautiful rendition of “Stille Nacht”, we lit our lanterns and Diya Diwali lamps and set off for carols in Priory park. Over 100 people braced the freezing temperatures to sing along to festive classics by candlelight.

The event was not only a lot of fun but showcased the changes in attitude in what has been known as a difficult area where HOPE not hate has been in the community for several years, towards peace and hope. We will continue to work closely with residents in Castle and Priory and to continue spreading messages of HOPE, starting with a community newsletter in the new year.

 Posted: 16 Dec 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Smarter, targeted and more effective

posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Friday, 12 December 2014, 12:05


Information is power. We knew it when we were fighting the BNP - when knowing what they were planning and having background information on their candidates gave us a huge advantage in planning our own campaign. And it is the same with UKIP.

We have now been offered an amazing opportunity which will greatly assist us in ensuring that the politics of HOPE defeat UKIP's fearmongering next May.

For just £10,000 we can purchase data that will enable us to target our campaign much more effectively than has been possible in the past.

Help us get this data

This data will enable us to deliver different materials to different audiences. What goes into a weak UKIP supporting household obviously needs to be different from that which goes to a strong anti-UKIP household. This data will help us identify the likely attitudes of people within our target constituencies so we can deliver the most appropriate message.

Help us put the right leaflet through the right door

https://donate.hopenothate.org.uk/right-leaflet-right-door

This is our last appeal of the year, but it is also probably our most important. We need to raise this money by the end of the year so we can start 2015 with the tools we need.

Please help us raise the £10,000 we need to be smarter, more targeted and even more effective.

 Posted: 12 Dec 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Human Rights Day

posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Wednesday, 10 December 2014, 08:58


It is 64 years since the UN General Assembly proclaimed 10 December as Human Rights Day.

This year’s slogan, Human Rights 365, encompasses the idea that every day is Human Rights Day.

Everything we do at HOPE not hate, every ounce of support we seek, is cemented by our faith in the universality of human rights.

That means equal rights for all, whenever and wherever they may be.

Young, old; male, female; disabled or able-bodied; gay, straight or transgender; rich or poor; people of faith and atheists.

Everyone.

Please follow the day on social media, using the hashtag: #rights365

Website: www.un.org/en/events/humanrightsday

 Posted: 10 Dec 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Jess Smith talk - life as a Scottish traveller

posted by: Glasgow HOPE not hate | on: Monday, 8 December 2014, 12:25


HOPE not hate anti-racism campaign invites you to hear best selling author Jess Smith talk about her life, memories & discrimination she has faced as a Scottish traveller.

Followed by a question & answer session.

JESS SMITH (www.jesssmith.co.uk)

HILLHEAD LIBRARY, SATURDAY 6TH DECEMBER 1.00PM TO 3.00PM

348 Byres Road, Glasgow, G12 8AP (5 minutes from Hillhead Underground Station)

FREE ADMISSION . ALL WELCOME

Part of the Scottish Trades Union Congress Our Future Free From Racism programme 2014

For more information please contact greater Glasgow HOPE not hate at: www.glasgowhopenothate.org or see stuc website at: www.stuc.org.uk


 Posted: 8 Dec 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Stooping to a new low

posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Friday, 5 December 2014, 09:50


I know the mainstream parties are worried about the threat of UKIP in Thurrock but there can be no excuse for the racist leaflet distributed by the Conservative Party in yesterday's Avery by-election. Amdist images of Islamist extremists, the leaflet calls the UKIP candidate, Tim Aker by his birth name - Timur Aker, in an obvious attempt to tell voters that he is a foreigner.

Sadly, this leaflet has been defended by local Conservative MP Jackie Doyle-Price and while it has been disowned by senior figures in the party follows a pattern of the Conservatives playing fast and loose with race.

There can be no place for racism in politics, especially from a local Conservative party which at the same time complains about UKIP's racism. An apology should be issued and a committment that this sort of nasty tactic will not be used again.

 Posted: 5 Dec 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Go directly to jail: Do not pass Go

posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Thursday, 27 November 2014, 22:06


Former C18 leader Charlie Sargent is back behind bars after being involved in a fight outside an Essex pub in the company of many of his old C18 friends.

Sargent was released from prison last year after being convicted for the murder of Chris Castle in 1997.

Castle, a close friend of Sargent's rival Will Browning, was lured to a mobile home in Essex where he was attacked and stabbed by Sargent's friend Martin Cross. The court had heard that Sargent was the prime motivator behind the murder and he was sentenced to life imprisonment.

The murder followed an often violent internal struggle for control of the nazi group. Sargent was subsequently exposed by ITV's World in Action of being a police informer.

He was released on licence last year on the proviso that he did not associate with any of his old C18 friends and he did not get involved in any violence.

Sargent broke this agreement from almost the moment he got out of prison and began meeting his former associates. He would meet his friends and plot his revenge against his old C18 enemies from the dark recesses of pubs in the hope of not being seen. Unfortunately for Sargent, HOPE not hate was monitoring his activities from the moment of his release.

Among those he associated with were:

* Tim Ryan, a former C18 and British Movement activist who himself is on licence after being convicted of possession of a gun, that was discovered buried in his mother's garden.

* Eddie Stampton, probably the most hated man on the British far right, and currently active with the southern faction of the National Front and co-ordinator of the British Golden Dawn.

* Rob Hitlon, a close associate from Sargent's C18 days and a long-time activist in the UDA.

* Frank Portinari, leader of the UDA on the British mainland, and convicted gunrunner.

* Andy Frain, a leading Chelsea hooligan and C18 supporter, who Sargent had little time for until they were in the same prison.

But Sargent was not just content to enjoy a social drink with his old friends. Free from prison, he actively tried to stir up trouble and re-open old feuds with Browning and others he blamed for his downfall.

Another of Sargent's old C18 friends, Warren Glass, attempted to get Sargent an invite to the wedding party being held for the lead singer of Section 88, but was unceremoniously told by the British Movement that the former C18 leader was not welcome.

Sargent also made contact with Mark Atkinson, who had sided with Browning during the original split but who has since gone his own way with the Racial Volunteer Force. Sargent was hoping that Atkinson would publicly turn on Browning and do re-open old wars.

Sargent was also working with Eddie Stampton to produce their version of the C18 story. However, Sargent was always careful to remain in the shadows and get others to do his bidding. So you can imagine his anger when Stampton posted a picture of the two of them together in a pub garden in Royton, Essex, earlier this year. Sargent demanded it was taken down but not before HOPE not hate researchers had copied the picture (thanks Eddie).

Finally, and most worryingly, Sargent and friends were actively looking for the home address of Darren Wells, Will Browning's former sidekick, who went on to work for me inside C18. At one point the Sargent faction was convinced they had traced Wells to an address in Essex but this proved to be a false lead.

Sargent's luck finally ran out over the weekend of 15/16 November, whilst out drinking with Andy Frain, Eddie Stampton, Rob Grey and his brother Steve, in a pub in a small village in Essex. As the beer flowed so the group became rowdy and the nazi salutes began. Sargent went outside and returned with a bloody nose, to which the others piled out to confront his assailants.

The police were called and though the men attacked decided not to press charges, Sargent's involvement was logged. He had broken his licence, was arrested and tonight is back in prison. And, with the evidence we are passing over to the Probation Service, hopefully for a long time.

Read the full story of Combat 18 in White Riot

 Posted: 27 Nov 2014 | There are 8 comments | make a comment/view comments

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Are you in the 85%?

posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Friday, 21 November 2014, 07:49


UKIP has just won another parliamentary by-election and they are clearly on a roll. Meanwhile, the other political parties are in a panic, trying to “out-UKIP” UKIP and the media is scurrying around looking for the next defections.

What a mistake.

Opinion polls give UKIP the support of just 15% of the population. Where are the other 85%? The problem is we are quiet – even silent.

That can change, right now if we make a stand.

UKIP’s backward-looking populism doesn't represent me or the Britain I want to live in. If you agree then please stand with me and let's mobilise the 85%.

HOPE not hate will shortly be unveiling its 2015 campaign strategy. We’ve consulted widely, studied what works and what doesn't and have formulated a clear plan which I will shortly share with you. I promise it will be exciting, nuanced, targeted and effective.

But today my ask is simple. I want you to join me in saying proudly that we are part of the 85% and that we refuse to dance to the “UKIP tune”.

By signing the pledge, you’ll be making a commitment to help defeat the politics of fear and hate..

Make the pledge now

http://action.hopenothate.org.uk/page/s/im-with-the-85

We need to find our voice before the political debate gets even more poisoned. Trying to “out-UKIP” UKIP is a recipe for disaster as it only gives them added legitimacy. Instead, we need politicians to tackle the underlying economic pessimism that’s driving support for UKIP by offering voters an achievable vision of a better tomorrow.

UKIP offers one vision of Britain, HOPE not hate another. We know many people have lost all hope, but UKIP’s fear-mongering and scapegoating is not the answer. As YouGov president Peter Kellner wrote in yesterday's Times: “The wrong way to fight UKIP is to accept its agenda and fight on its ground”.(1)

We are the 85%.

We are sleepwalking into a UKIP disaster unless we act now. Make the pledge and let’s get to work.

http://action.hopenothate.org.uk/page/s/im-with-the-85

 Posted: 21 Nov 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments