Download CAIR's app here: http://www.cair.com/app 

CAIR-Columbus Settles Wrongful Termination Case for Muslim Worker

(COLUMBUS, OHIO, 12/13/2017) -- The Columbus, Ohio, chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Columbus) announced today that it has reached a settlement with a local company for wrongfully terminating a Muslim man.

The Muslim man was wrongfully terminated in May 2015 for asking for a prayer accommodation. He worked for the company for close to a decade. He was an excellent employee with no work performance issues. Every evening he would take a short break to perform his evening prayers. However, after a change in management, he was told that he could not take the short break to perform his prayers anymore. The taking of this break has not caused any problems for the company. When he insisted on his right to get a religious accommodation, he was terminated by the company.

“Our client is pleased that this matter was successfully resolved and that he has received a monetary compensation for the wrongful termination,” said CAIR-Columbus Legal Director Romin Iqbal. “The law on religious accommodation is very clear. You don’t have to choose between your religion and your job. As long as the accommodation requested does not place an undue burden on the company, your employer has an obligation to accommodate your request,” he added. “The request for accommodation can be for wearing hijab at work, or for keeping a beard, or for taking a break to perform your prayers or to break your fast.”

CAIR-Columbus is currently representing more than 50 Muslims who have been wrongfully terminated from the workplace.

Ohio Muslims who are facing similar delays are being urged to contact CAIR-Columbus for assistance by filing an incident report online at: https://www.cair-columbus.com/

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding. The CAIR-Ohio Affiliate has three chapters – Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati.

The Washington-based civil rights and advocacy organization urges community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR's Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/report

CAIR recently launched an app to share critical “know your rights” information and to simplify the process to report hate crimes and bias incidents. CAIR is urging American Muslims and members of other minority groups to download the app and utilize this resource to stay informed and empowered.

For a quick download of CAIR’s civil rights app, click here: http://www.cair.com/app

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

- END - CONTACT: C CAIR-Columbus Executive Director, Jennifer Nimer, 614-451-3232, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR-Ohio Legal Director Romin Iqbal, 614-783-7953, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

CAIR Welcomes Withdrawal of Islamophobic Alabama Judicial Nominee Brett Talley

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 12/13/2017) -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today welcomed the withdrawal of Brett Joseph Talley for the position of United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama.

Media reports indicate that Talley has offered to withdraw from consideration.

SEE: Nomination of Brett Talley for Federal Judgeship in Alabama Won't Move Forward

“We welcome the fact that Mr. Talley will not pass judgement on the rights and religious freedoms of any Americans,” said CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw. “Any subsequent nominee should have a track record of judicial decisions upholding constitutionally-protected rights for people of all faiths and backgrounds.”

CAIR-Alabama Executive Director Khaula Hadeed said: "Here in Alabama, we must commit ourselves to protecting the rights of all people. Our judges must have both the experience and background to reflect that commitment, and the president and senate are obligated to nominate and confirm candidates who reflect our values and our commitment to fair and equal treatment under the law."

Last month, CAIR, along with 43 other civil society, civil rights organizations, faith groups, and law offices sent a letter to every Senate office strongly requesting a “no” vote on Talley’s confirmation due to his public record of making Islamophobic and disparaging remarks about American Muslims and Islam.

CAIR: 44 Groups Tell Senate to Vote ‘No’ on Islamophobic Alabama Judicial Nominee Brett Talley

The groups said Talley’s publicly-stated Islamophobic opinions that “mainstream” Islam preaches the “murder of nonbelievers” and his support for President Trump’s statement “Islam hates us,” demonstrated an inability to be impartial in cases related to the rights and religious freedom of American Muslims.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR-Alabama Executive Director Khaula Hadeed, 334-224-2196, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

CAIR-Columbus Helps Iraqi-Americans Become Citizens After Years of Delay

(COLUMBUS, OHIO, 12/13/2017) -- The Columbus, Ohio, chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Columbus) announced today it has successfully resolved another citizenship delay lawsuit.

The suit, filed in Federal court for the Southern District of Ohio, was on behalf of two Iraqi green card holders who had been waiting for decisions on their naturalization applications for over two and a half years.  The applicants, a husband and wife, had no criminal history and no reason was given by USCIS for the extreme delay in adjudication.  Until the lawsuit was filed, USCIS failed to even schedule interviews for the couple, despite their repeated inquiries into the nature of the delay.

“We are happy to announce that since the filing of the lawsuit in October, we were able to successfully resolve the delay in adjudication, and our clients will be officially sworn in as a United States citizens next week,” said CAIR-Columbus Executive Director Jennifer Nimer.

Since President Trump took office, CAIR-Columbus attorneys noted that they have seen an increase in delays of all types of immigration applications.  Since the beginning of 2017 alone, CAIR-Columbus has filed immigration delay lawsuits for 26 different plaintiffs. Those suits resulted in 20 of the plaintiffs being approved thus far, while others are still pending.

“USCIS has been instructed by the attorney general and the president to ‘rigorously enforce all grounds of inadmissibility and/or denial of immigration benefits’ and we believe this is contributing to USCIS delaying applications in order to look for any reason to deny them, even for minor issues that typically would not result in a denial,” added Nimer. “However what we are seeing with many Muslim applicants is that their cases are just delayed indefinitely with no explanation. Our only option is to continue filing lawsuits until USCIS stops this practice of unreasonable and unexplained delays for Muslim applicants.”

Ohio Muslims who are facing similar delays are being urged to contact CAIR-Columbus for assistance by filing an incident report online at: https://www.cair-columbus.com/

The Washington-based civil rights and advocacy organization urges community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR's Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/report

       

CAIR recently launched an app to share critical “know your rights” information and to simplify the process to report hate crimes and bias incidents. CAIR is urging American Muslims and members of other minority groups to download the app and utilize this resource to stay informed and empowered.

For a quick download of CAIR’s civil rights app, click here: http://www.cair.com/app

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

- END - CONTACT: C CAIR-Columbus Executive Director, Jennifer Nimer, 614-451-3232, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR-Ohio Legal Director Romin Iqbal, 614-783-7953, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

CAIR ISLAM-OPED: Love for Jesus Can Bring Christians and Muslims Together

Ibrahim2IMPORTANT NOTE: This commentary was very popular with readers nationwide when it was first distributed before Christmas a number of years ago. It is being offered again this year for those publications that were unable to publish it previously.

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ISLAM-OPED is a syndication service of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) designed to offer an American Muslim perspective on current political, social and religious issues. ISLAM-OPED commentaries are offered free-of-charge to one media outlet in each market area. Permission for publication will be granted on a first-come-first-served basis.

Please consider the following commentary for publication.

CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

TEL: Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726 (c)

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Love for Jesus Can Bring Christians, Muslims Together

By Ibrahim Hooper

Word Count: 569

[Ibrahim Hooper is National Communications Director for the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil liberties group. He may be contacted at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ]

“Behold! The angels said: ‘O Mary! God giveth thee glad tidings of a Word from Him. His name will be Jesus Christ, the son of Mary, held in honor in this world and the Hereafter and in (the company of) those nearest to God.’”

Before searching for this quote in the New Testament, you might first ask your Muslim co-worker, friend or neighbor for a copy of the Quran, Islam’s revealed text. The quote is from verse 45 of chapter 3 in the Quran.

It is well known, particularly in this holiday season, that Christians follow the teachings of Jesus. What is less well understood is that Muslims also love and revere Jesus as one of God's greatest messengers to mankind.

Other verses in the Quran, regarded by Muslims as the direct word of God, state that Jesus was strengthened with the “Holy Spirit” (2:87) and is a "sign for the whole world.” (21:91) His virgin birth was confirmed when Mary is quoted as asking: “How can I have a son when no man has ever touched me?” (3:47)

The Quran shows Jesus speaking from the cradle and, with God’s permission, curing lepers and the blind. (5:110) God also states in the Quran: “We gave (Jesus) the Gospel (Injeel) and put compassion and mercy into the hearts of his followers.” (57:27)

As forces of hate in this country and worldwide try to pull Muslims and Christians apart, we are in desperate need of a unifying force that can bridge the widening gap of interfaith misunderstanding and mistrust. That force could be the message of love, peace and forgiveness taught by Jesus and accepted by followers of both faiths.

Christians and Muslims would do well to consider another verse in the Quran reaffirming God’s eternal message of spiritual unity: “Say ye: ‘We believe in God and the revelation given to us and to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and it is unto Him that we surrender ourselves.’” (2:136)

The Prophet Muhammad himself sought to erase any distinctions between the message he taught and that taught by Jesus, who he called God’s “spirit and word.” Prophet Muhammad said: “Both in this world and in the Hereafter, I am the nearest of all people to Jesus, the son of Mary. The prophets are paternal brothers; their mothers are different, but their religion is one.”

When Muslims mention the Prophet Muhammad, they always add the phrase “peace be upon him.” Christians may be surprised to learn that the same phrase always follows a Muslim’s mention of Jesus or that we believe Jesus will return to earth in the last days before the final judgment. Disrespect toward Jesus, as we have seen all too often in our society, is very offensive to Muslims.

Unfortunately, violent events and hate-filled rhetoric around the world provide ample opportunity for promoting religious hostility. And yes, Muslims and Christians do have some differing perspectives on Jesus’ life and teachings. But his spiritual legacy offers an alternative opportunity for people of faith to recognize their shared religious heritage.

America’s Muslim community stands ready to honor that legacy by building bridges of interfaith understanding and challenging those who would divide our nation along religious or ethnic lines.

We have more in common than we think.

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