Pic courtesy of India Today

Sikhs Save Drowning Boys – Yet Sikhi isn’t Credited

The courageous act of Sikhs in Sangrur, India has been covered by media the world over. However, unfortunately the coverage often revolves around the notion these men had to forgo religious rules to help the children. Just as in the case of Harman Singh of New Zealand who helped an injured child using the material from his dastaar (turban), Sikh PA look to make media aware that compassion is a major part of Sikhi and there are stories of Singhs using their dastaars in such fashion going back many years. See below for the story.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Sikh-youth-removes-turban-saves-4-from-drowning/articleshow/49157079.cms 

ITV Appeal – Sikhs Tackle Migrant Crisis in Calais

Sikh PA have again arranged for ITV to cover Midland Langar Seva Society in their attempts to help the migrants in Calais, currently living in severely dire conditions. The work of MLSS is a great way to showcase the Sikh ethos to world and follows in the footsteps of the likes of Bhai Kanhaiya Ji. The TV piece will be on ITV Central News at 6pm tonight (17/09/15).

 

Click this link to see the online appeal from ITV – http://www.itv.com/news/central/update/2015-09-17/midland-sikh-societys-appeal-for-calais-migrant-crisis/

Hate Crimes against Sikhs post 9/11

The incident of 9/11 undoubtedly changed the world in irrevocable ways. Despite being completely uninvolved in anything to do with 9/11, Sikhs have been one of the most affected groups in the aftermath of the tragic events.

Post 9/11, a specific image of what a terrorist looks like became embedded in the psyche of much of the Western world. This has seen Sikhs become victims of abuse, attacks and even murder.

Many followers of the Sikh faith wear turbans and keep their hair uncut, in adherence to the teachings of the Sikh Gurus. This means men will often have beards and turbans, whilst women may also wear a turban or keep their heads covered with a shawl. The physical identity of the Sikh often stands out in Western countries, even more so than other minority groups. This has resulted in Sikhs suffering from what can only be described as Islamophobic abuse all over the world and most notably in the USA. The severity of the situation can be seen in the fact that the first post 9/11 hate crime victim to be killed was a Sikh, whilst as recently as 2012 a man invaded a Sikh temple and randomly started shooting worshippers, killing six people.

This issue is yet to be recognised by any government organisation. There is no country where attacks on Sikhs are collated separately by authorities, nor has there been any specific campaigns created by government agencies to help educate the public on who Sikhs are. However, Sikh groups are tackling this issue.

Below you can find articles on hate crimes against Sikhs and also discussion on how Sikhs are looking to tackle the problem. For more information or to speak to someone involved in campaigns against Sikh Hate Crime, contact Sikh PA on Media@SikhPA.com.

SIKH COALITION INSIGHT INTO LATEST INCIDENTS OF HATE CRIMES AGAINST SIKHS

http://sikhcoalition.org/hatecrimes

SIKH TEMPLE IN NORTH ENGLAND DAUBED WITH ISLAMOPHOBIC GRAFFITI

http://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/yobs-spray-die-muslims-die-9985403

BALBIR SINGH SODHI – FIRST DOMESTIC VICTIM OF 9/11

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Balbir_Singh_Sodhi

DISCUSSION OF SIKH IDENTITY ISSUES FOLLOWING VIRAL BULLYING VIDEO

http://www.londonlive.co.uk/news/2015-03-11/islamaphobic-bullying-goes-viral

LIST OF HATE CRIMES FROM SEPTEMBER 2001 – JANUARY 2002

http://www.realsikhism.com/index.php?subaction=showfull&id=1210913104&ucat=8

WISCONSIN SIKH TEMPLE MASSACRE

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wisconsin_Sikh_temple_shooting

HISTORY OF HATE CRIMES FROM 9/11 TO 2012

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/07/history-of-hate-crimes-against-sikhs-since-911_n_1751841.html

Sikh Charity Tackle Calais Refugee Crisis

Sikh organisations have lived up to the remit of the Khalsa by looking to help refugees currently stranded in Calais. Sikh PA have showcased the efforts of these groups through the media in order to raise awareness about the Sikh ethos and also inspire others to support and help in the same way.

See the link below just giving a slight glimpse into some of the brilliant work done by Midland Langar Seva Society. You can keep track of the MLSS do by following them on Facebook.

Sikh PA are still discussing further coverage with media regarding other groups supporting this issue too. If you are part of a charity organisation helping in any way, please get in touch through Media@SikhPA.com.

http://www.itv.com/news/central/2015-09-07/walsall-based-charity-arrives-in-calais-to-help-refugees/

Screen Shot 2015-09-07 at 15.25.51

Khalsa Aid reach Calais to donate aid and carry out refugee assessment.

This weekend, the Slough based UK charity Khalsa Aid distributed much needed water and food to the refugee camps out in Calais, France.

The team left the UK in the early hours of the morning and worked closely with camp coordinators to distribute essential aid items.  This aid programme will be extended across Europe in the coming weeks.

Following the increasing refugee crisis across Europe Khalsa Aid extended their work to Calais to not only deliver essential aid but to also carry out an assessment of needs.  the organisation has been working with refugees across the Middle East since 2013.  They say “We will continue to support those in need and provide humanitarian assistance where ever it is required”.

Their work is only possible due to our generous supporters. Please visit www.KhalsaAid.org to donate.

For further information email media@sikhpa.com

Screen Shot 2015-09-07 at 15.12.14

Sikh man hailed as Australian Of The Day

A Sikh Australian hailed ‘Australian of The Day’ as he prepares Langar to feed the homeless after his 12 hour night shift.

For the past three years, Tejinder Pal Singh has dedicated the last Sunday of the month to feeding the poor and needy locals of northern Darwin, using his own income. He prepares vegetarian dishes which he then packs into huge containers and serves as a free lunch to the most needy and vulnerable people in his local Darwin.

This concept may have seen him being hailed as Australian of The Day, however serving others, langar and donating a part of your income for those who need it more is all part of a Sikhs life. Tejinder Pal Singh doesn’t feel that he is doing something out of the ordinary and simply following the life and duties of a Sikh.

To learn more about Langar and free food served in all Gurdwaras around the world visit: http://sikhpa.com/langarweek/

For more information contact: Media@sikhpa.com

Screen Shot 2015-09-07 at 14.50.35

Prestigious school ordered Sikh schoolgirls to remove turbans on first day back

 

Two schoolgirls were ordered to remove their turbans on the first day back at school at St Anne’s Catholic School in Southampton last week.

Newly enrolled Year Seven pupil Prasimran was told to remove her turban shortly after arriving at the girls school, while Simranjot said a teacher spotted the returning Year Nine student wearing her turban outside the gates before lessons. Both girls refused to remove them and the younger girl’s family arrived an hour later and took her home in protest.  Simranjot says she was forced to take hers off after staff began unraveling it – something which is highly disrespectful to Sikhs.

Although it is not a common sight, Sikh women also wear turbans and have equal choice and rights as Sikh men do in wearing them.  A turban, or more respectful term, Dastaar, is part of a Sikhs uniform and protects one of 5 Sikh gifts from god, Kesh – hair.

The Head teacher has since apologised and the girls are back at school.

It is important that we teach the outside world about the equality that Sikh women have in choosing to wear a turban. Video explains why Sikhs wear turbans and why women also can choose to wear them.

(http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/prestigious-school-forced-apologise-after-6372378)

For more information email media@sikhpa.com