Interfaith in Edinburgh
Edinburgh has a long history of successful Interfaith relations. In fact, 2010 saw the Centenary of Inter-Faith Dialogue in Edinburgh, originally started in 1910. There are several organisations which exist in Edinburgh for the pursuit of understanding of and respect for people of all Faiths.
We are very fortunate in having Rabbi Mark Solomon as our Rabbi. He is Liberal Judaism's first Interfaith Consultant and has already been engaged in promoting further the existing Inter-faith relations with the other Faith communities in Edinburgh and beyond.
Edinburgh and the surrounding areas are home to people of many Faiths and all these are represented in the various associations, some of which are listed below.
The Edinburgh Inter-faith Association - EIFA
We also work very closely with Police Scotland -
http://www.scotland.police.uk/ - [see also further down page]
Edinburgh Women's Inter-faith Group - EWIG (Women only)
Council of Christians and Jews - CCJ
Council of Christians and Jews UK
Festival of Spirituality and Peace - FSP
Edinburgh International Centre for Spirituality and Peace - EICSP
Edinburgh & Lothians Regional Equality Council - ELREC and Direct Approach (Women only)
Since 2010, when it was renamed, this is now known as the "Edinburgh and Lothians Regional Equality Council" - it was formerly Edinburgh and Lothians Racial Equality Council which focussed on BME issues. ELREC addresses issues of equality and discrimination across the nine groups classed as having "protected characteristics" - these include race, religion, gender orientation, transgender identity and disability.
There is a new Student Group initiative called TRUE (Tackling Racism, Uniting Everyone) Colours which meets on Friday afternoons from 2.30 p.m. until 4.00 p.m. to fight racism, discrimination and bullying in schools and to foster good relations. It is supported by a team of Staff and volunteers from ELREC.
For more information go to -
http://elrec.org.uk/service.htm#tc - there are also "TRUE Colours" pages on Facebook and YouTube.
One recent survey has been about Hate Crime in different communities; the Report is due out later this year.
The most recent survey has been on "Honour, Gender, Equality and Women's Rights" - there has been an excellent response to this survey which was open to both men and women. The results are being collated at the moment.
If anyone suffers from any form of discrimination, harassment or assault on grounds of race, religion, transgender identity, sexual orientation or disability - please do not hesitate to get in touch with ELREC or one of its representatives. ELREC now provides opportunity for Third Party Reporting of Hate Crime [not suitable for emergency incidents which require immediate Police action]. It is a free service and details may be found at the link below -
ELREC works very closely with Police Scotland and all crimes of this nature which are reported are followed up.
Police Scotland has a Third Party Reporting of Hate Crime facility - if you are a victim or you witness a crime, report it here -
You may also access the service through the Edinburgh Interfaith Association website -
Scottish Inter-Faith Council
N.B. Where organisations are designated "Women only" - this is for specific religious reasons in order that they may function in "safe spaces".
There are Jewish Representatives from either Sukkat Shalom (ELJC) or from Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation (EHC) in all these organisations, some of whom are on the Boards of Management, Executives or Committees and others are Members.
For events taking place in the various organisations, please go to the relevant websites for information.
On the first Monday of each month there is an Inter-faith Community Meal which is held at St John's Church, Princes Street. Details of Community Meal events maybe found on the EIFA web page at http://www.eifa.org.uk/monthly-community-meal/ - future dates will be announced there.