Bishop of St Albans asks Government about religious literacy of asylum caseworkers

stalbans190117-bOn 9th February 2017 Lord Singh of Wimbledon asked Her Majesty’s Government “what steps they are taking to combat religious extremism and to promote a cohesive society by enhancing religious literacy at all levels of government.” The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Aolan Smith, asked a follow up question:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, just three weeks ago I spent half a day in an immigration removal centre and so gained an up-to-date insight into some of the complex and sensitive issues that are being dealt with there. Concerns continue to be raised about the level of religious literacy among some of the asylum caseworkers. Is the Minister content with the level of training that they are getting in religious literacy and, if not, what can be done to improve it?

Baroness Williams of Trafford: The right reverend Prelate raises a very important point about the detention estate. Certainly an awful lot of time and effort has gone into the training of staff in terms of the sensitivities around LGBT detainees; in terms of his important point about religious literacy, I will go back and check on just what training is given in that area.