University of Birmingham Survey Reveals Scale of Islamophobia in the UK

The Muslim Council of Britain expressed its alarm about the scale of Islamophobia in parts of British society today, as revealed in a University of Birmingham survey carried out by YouGov.

The survey, presented in a report titled ‘The Dinner Table Prejudice: Islamophobia in Contemporary Britain‘, states that Muslims are the UK’s second ‘least liked’ group, after Gypsy and Irish Travellers. It also reveals that the British public is almost three times more likely to hold prejudiced views of Islam than they are of other religions.

As the Conservative Party is once again under scrutiny for institutional Islamophobiais once again under scrutiny for institutional Islamophobia, the survey also revealed that “more than one in four people, and nearly half of Conservative and Leave voters, hold conspiratorial views about Sharia ‘no-go areas’.”

Reacting to the report, Zara Mohammed, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain said:

“The findings from the University of Birmingham demonstrate how pervasive Islamophobia is in Britain today.  As we have seen with the latest revelations of Islamophobia in our ruling party, it exists amongst those who make a difference in our lives. 

Much of the prejudice is underpinned by lack of understanding or wilful misrepresentation. We must all redouble our efforts to challenge Islamophobia; that includes Muslim communities continuing to open our hearts and doors to our neighbours and the wider community, to show them what we are all about, and not what divisive figures would have us be.”

The University of Birmingham’s survey can be found here. It interviewed a sample of 1667 people between 20th and 21st July 2021 which was weighted by age, gender, social grade, voting record, region and level of education to ensure representativeness. Weighting was based on the census, Labour Force Survey, Office for National Statistics estimates, and other large-scale data sources.