Update On ‘Save Our Language Papers’ Campaign

Bad-Times_A4The ‘Save our Language papers’ Campaign began in June 2011, following complaints to the EKTA Project and NMP from local residents argued that the removal of non-English newspapers was discriminatory.

Newham council subsequently confirmed that it took the that the decision to remove the community language papers in April 2011 because it believes their provision created a barrier to residents learning English and integrating fully into the community.

To challenge this, the campaign launched a petition and following an initial meeting it managed to secure the endorsement of 12 local community groups.

The campaign’s supporters agreed that:

  • The decision should be challenged as there had been no consultation around the impact this would have on the community
  • The assumption reading language papers created a barrier to learning or speaking English was discriminatory and flawed
  • The assumption around accessing language provision at libraries prevents resident from integrating and participating in their community.

It was decided that the best way forward was to launch a petition to capture theses concerns and ensure that residents had a process to challenge the decision.

The aim of the petition is to:

  1. Reinstate community-language newspapers in Newham’s libraries.
  2. Prioritise funding and further resources to provision of English as a Second Language (ESOL).
  3. To commit to the continued provision of community-language books and audio books in Newham’s libraries.
  4. To recognise and celebrate the unique diversity of the London Borough of Newham including recognition of the languages and cultures of its individual communities.

The paper petition can be downloaded from:


Or you can sign online at: