Search

Fitzpatrick: Why I want law banning segregation’

14:08 03 September 2009

GOVERNMENT Minister Jim Fitzpatrick has called for segregation to be outlawed. The controversial Labour MP who walked out of a Muslim wedding for being asked to sit apart from his wife, insists segregation of men and women should be against the law

By Victoria Huntley

GOVERNMENT Minister Jim Fitzpatrick has called for segregation to be outlawed in Britain.

The controversial East London Labour MP, who hit the headlines last week after walking out of a Muslim wedding for being asked to sit apart from his wife, insists segregation of men and women outside places of worship should be against the law.

Mr Fitzpatrick, the MP for Poplar and Canning Town, told the BBC that he does not oppose segregation in mosques, but believes separating men and women in halls such as the London Muslim Centre and other public buildings was "unacceptable."

Mr Fitzpatrick told the PM programme: "Forcing people apart, removing the choice to be able to sit together, for me is a very big issue.

"There is an equalities issue here which needs to be explored. There is nothing as I understand it in law to prevent forced segregation.

"The scope would be to prevent anybody who owns a public hall, place of celebration or community gathering to actually say that one section of the community is barred from entering."

The Government Minister for farming was highlighting the issue because he detects a growing intolerance among a minority of his East End constituents who organise around the Islamic Forum of Europe.

Latest News Stories

3 minutes ago
Buddleia hit squad... volunteers clean-up Regent's Canal

Volunteers have been busy getting rid overgrown plants from the Regent’s Canal near east London’s Victoria Park before nearby buildings are plagued by extending roots damaging brick work.

54 minutes ago
Today Parliament dissolved, marking the official start of 2015's general election campaigning (Pic by Andrew Matthews/PA)

Today parliament dissolved, marking the start of official general election campaigning.

Saturday, March 28, 2015
Caitlin Moran

Hundreds flocked to the launch of a unique tool to marry technology and creativity this month.

Saturday, March 28, 2015
It's fun tunnelling for one nipper at East End's new drop-in children's centre [photos: Carmen Valino]

Tunnelling for Crossrail 150ft deeep under east London may have been completed last month—but on the surface there is serious tunnelling still being carried out by this toddler.

Most read news

What happens if there’s an international crisis? Are all MPs now unemployed? And can the Prime Minister still tie any successor’s hands?

The Sun columnist has landed herself in hot water after claims she may have stirred up racial tension in Rochdale.

Your gaming and your music are about to collide in a whole new, seamless way.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Docklands and East London Advertiser e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder