Unmesh Desai and Ehtasham Hoque

News from Unmesh Desai: Assembly Member hosts launch of Muslim Council of Britain’s report

31 August 2019

Local London Assembly Member, Unmesh Desai AM, hosted the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) at City Hall as they launched their report, Elderly & End of Life Care for Muslims in the UK on Wednesday. Mr Desai welcomed the report, underlining the “need to find solutions” to “the stark health inequalities” and the “growing issues of loneliness and social alienation” that the research reveals.

The report, undertaken in conjunction with the University of Cambridge’s Centre of Islamic Studies, seeks to highlight some the specific issues facing the Muslim community in terms of care provision for the elderly and end of life care. 

Representatives from the Muslim Council of Britain and the University of Cambridge spoke at the event to debate the headline findings of the report, including figures that indicate Muslim women over the age of 65 disproportionately suffer from bad or very bad health when compared to the general population. 

Other findings from the report also revealed that engagement with elderly Muslims was a low priority for mosques and community centres, alongside wide variations in how effectively local authorities accommodate the religious needs of older people.

From City Hall, the Mayor’s London Health Inequalities Strategy sets out an aim to improve social infrastructure and support faith activities in order to boost the physical and mental health of Londoners and help to strengthen communities.

Speakers at the event included Harun Rashid Khan, Secretary General of the MCB and Ehtasham Hoque of the MCB’s Research and Documentation Committee.


Local London Assembly Member, Unmesh Desai AM, said: 

“It was an honour to host the MCB for the launch of this significant and timely report. The detailed level of research that has been undertaken represents the wide scope of views of all those involved with elderly and end of life care in the UK’s Muslim community.

“The report’s important findings reveal the stark health inequalities between elderly Muslims and the general population as well as the growing issues of loneliness and social isolation within our communities. 

“It is clear that local authorities and care services quickly need to find solutions to these problems and where necessary, refine existing elderly and end of life care practices, to more sensitively accommodate religious beliefs.” 

ENDS

Notes to editors

-    A copy of the MCB’s report, Elderly & End of Life Care for Muslims in the UK, can be found attached;

-    The Mayor’s London Health Inequalities Strategy can be read here;

-    Unmesh Desai AM is the London Assembly Member for City and East (covering Barking and Dagenham, Newham, Tower Hamlets and the City of London).

For more information please contact Research Support Officer, Nicholas Wilson, on 020 7983 4401. Number not for publication.

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