Statement of Support for Our Islamic Community

Posted Monday 18 March, 02:51pm

On behalf of Ararat Rural City Council we wish to extend our sympathies to the families, friends and faith communities affected by the shootings in Christchurch last Friday. The hurt from this senseless act is great and extends far beyond those families and communities directly affected – it hurts us all, it diminishes us all and in some way it changes the world for us all. The thought of people being murdered while at worship is repugnant to fair minded people everywhere and greatly saddens us.

Such events make us think of our own local Islamic community. They are shocked and in pain over what has happened. The Mayor, Cr Peter Beales offers his support, “Our local Islamic community are very important to us, they are a part of Ararat Rural City – they are our friends, neighbours and workmates -  I offer my sympathy, concern and ongoing support to them over the next days, weeks and months as they begin to recover from this terrible act. Ararat Rural City is a culturally inclusive community, we welcome people from across the world and we will stand by our Islamic community during this time.”

The Deputy Mayor, Cr Jo Armstrong met with our Islamic community yesterday and offered her personal support. ‘’Our local Islamic community are hurting and need our friendship and compassion as they begin to recover from the horror of what has happened in Christchurch. I encourage all of us to be mindful of what has happened and make sure we live our inclusive community values as we all recover from this terrible act. I hope that this can serve to make our community bonds stronger.”

Ararat Rural Council truly values our capacity to welcome people from across the world regardless of culture or religion. This is a time that we need to demonstrate this in a very clear way to our Islamic community.