On the 24th August 2007, Sophie Lancaster died from her injuries following a horrific attack in Stubbylee Park, Bacup. The simple reason why Sophie and her boyfriend were attacked was this- they looked different.
Sophie died because of the prejudices, hate and intolerance that people from alternative subcultures often face today, all over our country. This type of crime is also more common than is estimated- many young people have come into contact with these negative views in their daily lives.
This intolerance for alternative subcultures has now become almost normal in our society- a society where freedom of expression and individuality isn’t always appreciated doesn’t seem very fair. It’s also a bit of a mystery why, when young people in particular take so much stick, they then divide themselves with hatred and aggression for each other.
The aim of the Sophie Lancaster Foundation is to Stamp Out Prejudice, Hate and Intolerance Everywhere. The foundation was set up by Sophie’s mother, Sylvia Lancaster.
The goals of the foundation are
· To create a lasting legacy to Sophie
· To change the law by having hate crime legislation brought up to date- so that all hate attacks on individuals from a particular subculture are treated with the same seriousness as a racial attack, for example. A change in the law will allow people to feel safe whilst expressing their individuality, as this is the right of every person.
· To make a difference through education. Attacks on people of alternative subcultures are often a result of ignorance or a lack of understanding. This education will be conveyed as part of a groundbreaking workshop which is being taken into schools, to help pupils appreciate members of all youth cultures.
· Working with local politicians and police for a better understanding.
At Bloodstock Open Air festival this year, the Lava Stage was officially renamed the Sophie Lancaster Stage. The response from this was incredible- I went to buy a S.O.P.H.I.E. wristband just outside the stage only to find they had sold out in no time! I could say with confidence that not one person who went to Bloodstock wouldn’t know about the Sophie Lancaster Foundation, this is just one the ways that they are gaining positive publicity and support.
If you would like to find out more about the Sophie Lancaster Foundation or share your thoughts, please visit www.sophielancasterfoundation.com
Stamp Out Prejudice, Hate and Intolerance Everywhere
Member since: 11th April 2012
I'm Isabella, I live in Bury and I have an interest in all things local and current.