Sectarianism and Racism: consultation submission PDF Print E-mail
Sectarianism and Racism.
Response to the consultation on the report of the cross-party working group on religious hatred.

March 2003

Dr Joe Bradley
Prof. Mary Hickman
Dr. Robbie Mc Veigh
Dr. David Miller
Prof. Bill Rolston

As a group of academics who have all worked in the area of sectarianism and racism we have a number of concerns about the report of the cross party working group. We confess to some alarm at the orientation and contents of some parts of the report of the cross party working group.

Overall our main concerns are an apparently confused view of how to define sectarianism, leading to confusion in how to tackle the problem. This is illustrated in particular by the very title of the report 'tackling religious hatred'. It seems to us that viewing this narrowly as a question of religion hinders rather than helps us to recognise and deal with the problem. The key to this seems to us the lack of recognition of the fact that there is a significant ethnic minority population of people of Irish origin living in Scotland. It is this community which bears the brunt of sectarianism. The report does not recognise this with any clarity and this is a serious concern. Until this is recognised and clearly identified there is little chance that 'sectarianism' will be eradicated from Scottish society. Read the full submission here .