Scenario - Public Response Research
Social tensions are rising. In the traditionally peaceful inner-city areas that make up Mainbrace, there has been growing agitation from anti-immigration groups, conservative media, and even some right-wing activists. This is mainly directed towards muslims and recent immigrants from Afghanistan and the Middle East. A small number of these agitators are violent extremists, others are overzealous newspaper reporters looking to make a name for themselves, and many are concerned but misinformed citizens. Worringly though, over the last year and a half, a political group called Advance Australia has unified these elements and seems to be gaining popularity in Mainbrace. They intend to field candidates in state and federal elections and, according to some political analysts, may even win a seat. For many local groups and mainstream political parties, however, Advance Australia is simply a racialy prejudiced Nationalist group running a campaign of hatred and mis- information. Many of their “information drives” spread falsehoods about muslims and immigrants and worryingly there has been a sharp increase in racially motivated attacks throughout Mainbrace and near-by areas. For the political and social activists these upshots are worrying. For the NSW police, the rising tensions fueled by Advance Australia are now reaching crisis point. The NSW Commissioner and the Superintendent of Mainbrace have now called upon the local Federal Member of Parliament, Claire Reznik, to use some political resources to push back and counter the Advance Australia media drives. This is where our involvement starts.
The most recent Advance Australia campaign has focused on muslim women and the wearing of Hijab, especially the Burqa, and Niqab. Advance Australia are calling for the Burqa to be banned. They have just released a “mission statement” making various claims and citing evidence to support their demand that muslims be banned from wearing any kind of religious face coverings. We have been recruited to help counter these claims and provide information to the local Member for Federal Parliament, Clare Reznik, in her response to Advance Australia’s “Ban The Burqa” campaign. We need you to do much of the requested research and analysis here.