Grassroots funding to tackle extremism in London
Sadiq Khan has announced an additional £400,000 investment in a grassroots fund to empower communities to counter extremism, tackle the rise in hate crime offences and keep vulnerable Londoners safe from radicalisation.
The Mayor of London reaffirmed his commitment to tackling violent extremism in all its forms ahead of the 9/11 20th anniversary, and has made it clear that racism and hate crime have no place in the capital as London prepares to welcome more than 150 families from Afghanistan.
The investment builds on the work of the Mayor’s Shared Endeavour Fund, which has directly benefited 25,000 participants and reached more than 600,000 Londoners overall since it launched in 2020 - enabling community groups to deliver vital grassroots projects that tackle all forms of violent extremism, racism, antisemitism, Islamophobia and misogyny.
Lockdown restrictions have meant Londoners are spending more time than ever online at home, away from support networks and at greater risk of exposure to harmful content, increasing their vulnerability to radicalisation. It has resulted in a rise in online disinformation and conspiracy theories which has been used by extremists of all persuasions to promote hate and violence, a development that Khan says makes the second phase of grassroots funding more important than ever.
Khan said: “We will soon be marking the 20th anniversary of the horrific 9/11 terrorist attacks. Sadly, violent extremism remains one of the biggest threats facing many cities around the world, including London. Nothing is more important to me than keeping Londoners safe. That’s why I asked Lord Harris to complete a new independent review into what can be done to improve our city’s preparedness for a major terrorist attack, and it’s why I’m announcing that we’ll be investing an additional £400,000 to do even more to help tackle violent extremism in all its forms.
“This new investment is about empowering communities to deliver grassroots projects that not only work to prevent violent extremism and to stop vulnerable Londoners from becoming radicalised, but to tackle racism and hate crime. Since last year, the projects we’ve supported have already directly benefited 25,000 people and reached more than 600,000 altogether. This additional investment will ensure we can reach many thousands more.”