#SilenceHate to Combat Hate against Migrants and Refugees

Published: 8 March 2018

Countries: Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Poland, United Kingdom

COSPE_Logo_Silence_HateMany recent studies show that manifestations of hate speech against migrants and refugees are increasing in Europe. The Italian organisation COSPE gathered eight prominent European organisations under the project and campaign #SilenceHate. The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) together with COSPE, Amnesty Italy and Poland, European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), Karpos, Zaffiria and the Cyprus Community Media Centre will combat and prevent online hate speech against migrants and refugees by developing new and creative counter-narratives.

In April, MDI together with EFJ and COSPE will organise the media camp in London as a 5-day training for journalists, audio visual professionals, and social activists in order to build a counter-narrative on migration. According to the #SilenceHate project’s narrative, the most effective way to tackle hatred is through education and debate.

Schools and media have a vital role to play in challenging hostility and prejudice, encouraging social solidarity and helping to promote understanding and empathy with others. Instead of focusing only on the possible negative consequences of the use of the internet, the idea is to explore the opportunities offered by modern technologies and innovative media productions for intercultural dialogue.

Media literacy has a crucial role, because media portrayals influence public perceptions and attitudes and, especially for sensitive topics such as migration, it’s important to be aware of the effects of the information flow. In the era of social media the need for promoting a critical approach and correct use of the media is even more urgent. Part of the solution is giving people the tools to bring about change themselves.

Some of the activities in #SilenceHate project will include training courses for teachers, educators, and activists on how to counter hate speech through media literacy and intercultural dialogue; workshops for school students and young people aimed at identifying and reacting to hate speech manifestations with web tools and positive actions; production of investigative reports, digital initiatives, social media campaigns, and audio/visual productions by young people, journalists and activists about alternative narratives on migration in Europe.

#SilenceHate project is supported by the European Commission.