The UEA Islamic Centre was set to close before the start of this academic year 2012/13, but the University have decided to delay the closure. Here is a statement from the University’s Executive Team:
“Recent discussions about religious facilities on campus have surfaced the need for the University to develop a clear policy on the provision of appropriate facilities for prayer on campus for the followers of the key world faiths. Mindful of the concerns raised by a range of faith groups at UEA, including those within the Muslim community, about the adequacy of facilities for prayer and religious celebration, and having regard for the situation with respect to planning permission for the current Islamic prayer facility, following discussions with the Dean of Students, the Vice-Chancellor and the Executive Team have concluded that the University needs to take time to consider how we should provide for religious observance on campus in the future.
To this end the Executive Team will ask the University Council to consider a long-term policy for UEA on the provision and organisation of facilities for prayer and religious observance on campus, and the principles that should guide any future developments. Provisionally, therefore, the building housing the current Islamic prayer facility will remain open. Council will be asked to consider these matters in the light of the campus plan and the recently approved corporate plan.” – 5 September 2012
Well done to all of you who have been protesting and meeting and writing letters and doing anything to voice your concerns over the closure – you are the reason that the University have decided to delay the closure. We are trying to find out what consultation with UEA faith groups will look like for the ‘long-term policy’, and we will report back as soon as we hear anything.