The Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria (ECCV) has criticised Channel Nine television presenter Sonia Kruger for her recently reported anti-Muslim comments in the media.
ECCV Chairperson, Eddie Micallef, said Ms Kruger’s comments that Australian borders should be closed to Muslim immigrants were “unhelpful,” and potentially “highly divisive”.
“It has been reported that Ms Kruger made the statement during a panel discussion with co-hostDavid Campbell and host Lisa Wilkinson during the Today show.
“In March his year the Scanlon Foundation launched its Welcoming Cities initiative. This initiative helps communities recognise the important ways that immigrants and refugees make them stronger, socially and culturally.
“The Executive Director of Welcoming Cities America, David Lubell, in launching the report, said: ‘Welcoming America has seen communities transform into vibrant places where people from different backgrounds respect each other’s talents and values, and I have no doubt that Welcoming Cities is capable of the same in Australia’,”
“Mr Lubell has been quoted as saying: ‘Welcoming immigrants is not just the right thing to do, it’s also the smart thing to do’’,” Mr Micallef said.
“In a society based on democratic principles, we do not and should not have an immigration policy that singles out certain faith groups for discriminatory policies.
“We need to recognise, celebrate and promote the multi-faith groups that live cooperatively and harmoniously as an integral and vital part of our society.
“Actions of some individuals should not reflect on our multicultural and immigration programs.
“We have signed agreements with the United Nations which promote non-discriminatoryimmigration policies, and this is something we must continually strive to uphold.
“ECCV, along with many other organisations, is committed to upholding multi-faith and multicultural people’s right to keep their religion, beliefs and faith when they settle in Australia as one of the core principles of our culturally diverse society.”