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Oasis CEO Apologises to Sikh community for Causing Offence

March 23, 2024 | By

London: John Barneby, the Chief Executive Officer of the Oasis Community Learning Multi Academy Trust has apologised for offence caused to the Sikh community for including slides about a Sikh youth organisation in slides about religion, extremism and terrorism.

“A number of Sikh organisations and members of the community were outraged by the inclusion of an image of Sikh Youth UK alongside that of the Ku Klux Klan and the Taliban and challenged the Oasis Community Learning Multi Academy Trust”, Jaspal Singh, National Press Secretary of the Sikh Federation UK said.

“The Chief Executive Officer of the Oasis Community Learning Trust has confirmed in a letter to the Sikh Council UK that the offensive slides have now been removed”, he added.

Oasis Community Learning Multi Academy Trust is generally held in very high regard and runs 53 academies.

Dabinderjit Singh, the Principal Adviser of the Sikh Federation (UK) said:

“It is not enough for the CEO of Oasis to apologise and remove the slides. This targeting of a reputable Sikh organisation and its founder who is pictured in the slides is blatant and should never have taken place.”

“Sikh Youth UK and its founder deal with very challenging subjects like bullying and sexual grooming and this sort of misrepresentation makes their job that much more difficult,” Dabinderjit Singh said.

“Oasis should immediately write and apologise to Sikh Youth UK and its founder.  Showing his image puts him at risk from criminal gangs and could also have serious legal and other consequences for the Trust,” he added.

Dabinderjit Singh further said “This grave misrepresentation by the Trust however needs to be fully investigated as it could be argued Oasis has been spreading racial hatred.”

“They must establish how this was allowed to happen, what due diligence took place and take action against those that allowed this serious mistake to occur so it never happens again”, he added.  

He said: “We have written to the CEO today about these matters following the apology and copied Ofsted and the Department for Education.” 

“Unfortunately, it is mistakes like this that could be incorrectly used by lazy civil servants in weeks to come to falsely label one or two Sikh groups as ‘extremist’ under the government’s new extremist definition”, he added.

“We will not allow Sikh groups to be falsely labelled extremist for reasons of political correctness as politicians do not want to be seen and accused of picking only on Muslim and right wing groups”, said Principal Advisor of the Sikh Federation UK.

Copy of Apology Issued by Oasis CEO:

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