According to the latest census data, Islam is the second-fastest growing religion within the Blacktown local government area behind Hinduism, growing by 5139 people from 2011 to 22,645 in 2016. But general secretary of the Islamic Association Western Suburbs Sydney (IAWSS), Nasib Mohammed, says the need for burial space was reaching a crisis point and had left the community very concerned. The Daily Telegraph reports Mr. Mohammed saying "We are really worried".
The Daily Telegraph report states two petitions with almost 1000 signatures.have been submitted to Blacktown Council, asking more space for Muslim burials be made available at the Riverstone Cemetery.
Muslim burials demand a specific orientation. They may also require larger than traditional grave sites. “Because Muslim plots have to be oriented towards Mecca, there is an even more acute issue for this community,” a Blacktown Council spokesman said. “Of the 3840 plots available at Riverstone Cemetery, 460 are available for Muslim burial.”