Following the decision by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, declaring 2019 as the ‘Year of Tolerance’, the Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, directed the formation of the ‘Supreme National Committee for Tolerance’.
The newly formed Committee for Tolerance will be chaired by H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and have ministers and representatives from UAE civil society organisations as its members.
“We want the UAE to be the global reference point for a tolerant culture, via its policies, laws and practices,” His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said, adding that tolerance increases strength and resilience, and helps establish a global, cohesive society.
The Supreme National Committee for Tolerance’s mission during the Year of Tolerance is to consolidate values of tolerance within the UAE community, and spread this unique model to our global neighbours, His Highness explained.
The Committee members include: Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance; Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development; Nasser bin Thani Al Hamli, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation; Hessa Essa Buhumaid, Minister of Community Development; Jameela Al Muheiri, Minister of State for Public Education, Dr. Sultan bin Ahmad Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of the National Media Council; Ohoud bint Khalfan Al Roumi, Minister of State for Happiness and Wellbeing; Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs; Zaki Nusseibeh, Minister of State; Dr Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the World Council of Muslim Communities; Dr. Ali bin Tamim, Director-General of Abu Dhabi Media Company; Dr. Hamad Al Sheikh Ahmed Al Shaibani, Managing Director of the International Institute for Tolerance; Dr. Sultan Faisal Al Rumaithi, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Elders; Yasser Hareb, Emirati writer and media personality; Sunny Varkey, Founder of GEMS Education and Varkey Foundation; Isobel Abulhoul, CEO and Trustee of the Emirates Literature Foundation, and Dr. Najat Makki, Emirati Conceptual Artist, along with representatives from executive boards within the country.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid urged the members of the committee to work on a comprehensive framework for the Year of Tolerance, formulating a strategy to serve the main objectives behind the year, and to monitor the implementation of said strategy, ensuring that its seven pillars are applied across programmes and initiatives on local, regional and global levels.
His Highness also directed the committee to develop a plan of action in partnership all segments of society, using innovative initiatives that will have a direct, positive impact on the UAE community as a whole. He also called for the formation of local committees in coordination with relevant authorities across each of the Emirates, within a framework bringing together local and federal efforts towards attaining the primary objectives behind the Year of Tolerance.
The Year of Tolerance revolves around seven pillars:
Pillar 1: Tolerance in Community
The first pillar aims to promote the values of tolerance within family members, and to consolidate them among different cultures, activating the role of UAE community centres across the country to promote tolerant, cohesive societies.
Pillar 2: Tolerance in Education
This pillar’s objective is to solidify teachings behind the values of tolerance within education systems – across schools and universities – within the country.
Pillar 3: Tolerance in the Workplace
The third pillar’s focus is on creating a safe, tolerant, and cohesive workplace across public and private sector institutions and organisations, via educational progammes highlighting equal opportunities for all.
Pillar 4: Tolerance and Culture
The promotion of cultural tolerance is the main objective, via the launch of various events and programmes celebrating more than 200 nationalities residing in the country, and enhancing interactions between them via the arts and culture sector.
Pillar 5: UAE Model of Tolerance
This pillar seeks to solidify the UAE as the global capital for tolerance, via a series of initiatives and projects specialised in tolerance and dialogue between various cultures and civilisations.
Pillar 6: Tolerance in Legislation
The sixth pillar will see the Supreme National Committee for Tolerance work on developing policy, legislation and executive regulations guaranteeing the sustainability of values and lessons behind tolerance, dialogue, and cohesion among cultures, including a law on multiculturalism.
Pillar 7: Tolerance in the Media
The media is one of the most important axes in dissemination tolerance and co-existence values via targeted media campaigns and projects, as well as promoting the UAE Model of Tolerance across media channels and social networking sites.