Search

University of East London cancels segregated Islamic Society event

14:49 17 April 2014

The flyer for the cancelled UEL Isoc event

The flyer for the cancelled UEL Isoc event

Archant

An Muslim student event at a Beckton university that would have segregated seating by gender has been cancelled by the university after equality activists intervened.

The event was advertised as segregated and had separate booking phone numbers for men and womenThe event was advertised as segregated and had separate booking phone numbers for men and women

The dinner event, organised for tonight by the University of East London’s Islamic society, advertised it as a “segregated event”, and had separate booking phone numbers for “brothers” and “sisters”.

But UEL pulled the event after human rights activist Peter Tatchell lobbied Vice-Chancellor John Joughin, warning the seating arrangement would breach equality law.

The Day After Tomorrow event - which charged £5 for tickets - would have seen a lecture theatre at the UEL’s Docklands campus strictly segregated, with women and men sitting apart.

Concerns were also raised about statements made in the past by two of the preachers booked to appear.

Activist Peter Tatchell lobbied UEL over the eventActivist Peter Tatchell lobbied UEL over the event

A spokesman for UEL said: “The society will not be permitted to use any of UEL’s facilities or premises to host this event. “We have made it very clear to the organisers that the university will not tolerate segregation or hatred in any form.”

The UEL Islamic Society was not available for comment at time of press.

Mr Tatchell thanked UEL for the move, saying: “Gender segregated seating violates the university’s equal opportunities policies and the equality laws.

“The swift, positive response of UEL stands in contrast to some other universities which, in the name of tolerance, collude with Islamist intolerance by allowing extremist preaching on university premises.”

The news comes after the education body Universities UK withdraw guidance it had issued last year that said segregation could be allowed on campus if requested by speakers who would not attend otherwise.

The guidance provoked fury from women’s rights groups and was condemned by the Labour Party, the education secretary and the Prime Minister.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission said the law allows gender segregation at premises used for religious purposes but not in academic meeting or in lectures open to the public.

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 12:00
Brenda Lawley selling poppies  in Morrisons Stratford (photo: Arnaud Stephenson)

Step into a station, supermarket or shopping centre in the two weeks leading up to Remembrance Day and chances are you’ll come across a poppy seller.

Yesterday, 11:57
A computer-generated image of the phase two development from Barking Road

Months before its completion, the second phase of a major housing development has sold all of its homes.

Yesterday, 11:30
Planned engineering work could affect your journey this weekend.

There is a relatively minor programme of planned closures on the Tube and Overground network this weekend - but they could still affect your journey. Read on for the lowdown.

Yesterday, 09:57
Firefighters on strike at East Ham Fire Station last year

Firefighters are now on strike as part of a long-running dispute with the government over pension reforms.

Most read news

The billionaire businessman is joining his team in the Mojave desert.

“Space is hard and today was a tough day.”

One pilot is dead and another seriously injured after the craft exploded over the Mojave desert.

One pilot has died and another is seriously injured after a rocket belonging to billionaire Sir Richard Branson’s space tourism venture crashed during a test flight. Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo rocket came down in the Mojave Desert in California. An eyewitness reported that the craft exploded in flight after ignition. A Virgin Galactic spokesman said the […]

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition