value statement

April 2021


We are a not-for-profit arts organisation based in the UK for professionals connected to the Middle East, North Africa or the surrounding area (MENA+).


Our purpose is to bring people together, celebrate what connects us, spotlight our achievements, help our membership thrive, and lobbying for appropriate representation within the British live and recorded arts industry.


Our organisation is built on diversity, inclusivity, and creativity.


We are acutely aware that our membership is affected by challenges both in the UK and the MENA+ region. It is important for our organisation to recognise these.


• We wish to see an end to the structural and institutionalised oppression of people in the MENA+ region, whether by their governments or occupying forces. Where people are subject to oppression and occupation, we support the adoption of boycotts as a legitimate tool to bring these to a halt and our members' rights to join such boycotts.


• We wish to see an end to imperialism and colonialism in the MENA+ region.


• We wish to see an end to the destruction of land in the MENA+ region.


• We wish to see the end of biased and disproportionate policing/surveillance of MENA+ people.


• We wish to see the self-determination of the people in the MENA+ region.


• We wish to see freedom, justice and equality for the Palestinian people.


We believe that specifying the freedom of the Palestinian people does not negate any other conflict in the MENA+ region and that long-term stability in the MENA+ region is interlinked with the resolution of this long-running occupation in accordance with international law. "We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians." (Nelson Mandela)


MENA Arts UK was formed as a safe space for MENA+ artists to connect, be creative, and grow. We will work tirelessly to keep our spaces safe and believe that our creative endeavours can bring people together for lasting positive change.


We do not associate individual members with the actions of the government in their country (or countries) of origin. We reserve the right to suspend or remove any directory member who promotes any form of prejudice or hate.


• We will not tolerate anti-Blackness.


• We will not tolerate antisemitism.


• We will not tolerate discrimination based on ethnicity or nationality.


• We will not tolerate discrimination based on religious beliefs or faith.


• We will not tolerate discrimination against women.


• We will not tolerate discrimination against LGBTQ+ people.


• We will not tolerate discrimination based on age or class.


• We will not tolerate discrimination against D/deaf, disabled or neurodiverse people.


• We will not tolerate discrimination against migrants, refugees or asylum seekers.


MENA Arts UK is a new organisation bringing together our communities in a way that has not been done before in the UK. We will carefully consider our funding sources and plan to register as a charity in England and Wales.


As we grow this document will evolve.