Islamophobic abuse and attacks in Britain's public areas registered a whopping 326 per cent rise in 2015 with women in Muslim outfits emerging as the most vulnerable group, a new report claimed today.
Women were disproportionately targeted by mostly teenage perpetrators and more than one in 10 of all incidents took place in educational establishments and public transport and in city centres, another cluster area, Tell MAMA (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks) monitoring found in its research.
"We simply cannot have such hatred fester in our communities and in our societies. With a 326 per cent increase in anti-Muslim hatred reported to us in 2015, we have to deal with this issue. Now is the time to redouble our efforts to tackle such hate from all extremist groups," Tell MAMA founder Fiyaz Mughal told the 'Guardian'.
According to the report, the ability of Muslim women to travel on public transport free of fear and intimidation is being curtailed.
Women wearing the hijab or niqab were found to be especially "vulnerable".
"The largest proportion of incidents involve Muslim women, usually wearing Islamic garments, facing attacks from young white males," said the report.
Tell MAMA, which was founded in 2012, uses data from more than 15 police forces plus reports from victims and members of the public to compile a picture of Islamophobic activity in the UK annually.
The organisation directly received 1,128 reports of abuse and attacks in 2015, of which it verified more than 800.
"The statistics paint a profoundly bleak picture of the explosion of anti-Muslim hate both online and on our streets, with visible Muslim women being disproportionately targeted by cowardly hatemongers," said Shahid Malik, chair of Tell MAMA and former Labour party communities minister.
Workers in customer service roles, such as catering, security and taxi drivers, were also disproportionately targeted, according to the report.
Earlier this week, London Mayor Sadiq Khan directed Scotland Yard to be "extra vigilant" as racist incidents against all immigrants was feared to be on the rise following Britain's vote to leave the European Union (EU) last week.