How can we stand together?
29 July 2016 IN: Bishop
Many faith leaders across Greater Manchester, including myself, took a neutral stance before the EU Referendum in the hope that it would be easier for us to understand and sympathise with voters across a wide spectrum after what was an acrimonious campaign.
To build the best future for Britain, I believe there is one urgent task for each of us, whether we voted Leave or Remain.
Those who voted Remain need to acknowledge the overwhelming majority of Leave voters who are not part of the racist fringe that disfigures our society: people who believe with integrity that their vote will help us get something of our identity and even our country back. We need to engage with those who have seen little by way of economic benefit from EU membership, as their communities have suffered decline, and who hope that a more independent Britain offers a chance for change.
The challenge for Leave voters is perhaps even more urgent: to join in with and even lead immediate moves to isolate those who are trying to use the referendum decision as a building block for a resurgence of racist aggression. Leaders from all walks of society need to unite to make it absolutely clear that such attitudes are utterly abhorrent and have no place among us. In or outside of the EU we remain a nation where all our citizens have equal value, dignity and rights.
Faith leaders invite you to share acts of kindness and inclusion. Share your good news stories using #WeStandTogether.