CAIR-Colorado Calls for Hate Crime Charges After Armed Man Making Anti-Muslim Remarks Arrested Outside Denver Mosque

(DENVER, CO, 11/15/19) –The Colorado chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Colorado), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate a possible bias motive for an incident outside a Denver mosque involving an armed man making anti-Muslim remarks. 

The suspect allegedly crossed a parking lot at the mosque, turned and pointed what was described as a long gun at four individuals associated with the mosque and uttered anti-Muslim remarks at them. (Update: The weapon was later identified as an air rifle.)

The man then reportedly turned around and walked away still shouting anti-Muslim comments. No one at the scene was harmed. Police said the man was taken into custody and the weapon he used has not yet been located.  

SEE: Police: Armed man making anti-Muslim remarks outside Denver mosque arrested

https://www.9news.com/article/news/crime/man-armed-in-mosque-arrested-after-fleeing-scene-police-say/73-c8589e4c-f4dd-4cce-8fe6-197f3c288695

Arrest Made After Man Points Gun at Worshippers Outside Denver Mosque

https://denver.cbslocal.com/2019/11/14/denver-police-mosque-gun-suspect-arrest-downing/

“It is becoming all too common to see such incidents targeting mosques, and given the rise in anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant and white supremacist rhetoric and hate incidents across the nation, we urge law enforcement authorities to investigate a possible bias motive for this attack,” said CAIR-Colorado Acting Board Chair Krista Cole.

Cole noted that just this week, there was a mosque vandalism in Minnesota.

The Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization has reported an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims, immigrants and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president.

This week, CAIR called for a hate crime probe of an attack at a Minneapolis mosque as well as a policy change after a Pepsi Center security guard asked a woman to remove her hijab. 

SEE: CAIR-Minnesota Calls for Hate Crime Probe of Attack on Minneapolis Mosque

https://www.cair.com/cair_minnesota_calls_for_hate_crime_probe_of_attack_on_minneapolis_mosque

CAIR-Colorado to Call for Policy Change After Pepsi Center Demands Muslim Mom Remove Hijab
https://www.cair.com/cair_colorado_to_call_for_policy_change_after_pepsi_center_demands_muslim_mom_remove_hijab

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR-Colorado Acting Board Chair Krista Cole, kcole@cair.com, 703-501-0961;CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen, 202-774-0770, aajeen@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com


CAIR-Connecticut Calls for Probe of Possible Bias Motive for Repeated Vandalism Targeting Muslim Family’s Car

(HARTFORD, CT, 11/15/19) – The Connecticut chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CT), a chapter of the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called on law enforcement authorities to investigate a possible bias motive for the repeated vandalism of a vehicle belonging to a Hamden, Conn., Muslim physician and his family.

CAIR-CT says security camera video recorded the incident. This is the second time in less than two months that family car has been vandalized in front of the home. The mother and daughter both wear Islamic head scarves, or hijab, and say they have been harassed in the past for their attire.

Video: Egging of Conn. Muslim Family's Vehicle

https://youtu.be/CCw0ygS_AM4

The family installed surveillance cameras after the first assault on their vehicle. CAIR-CT is urging anyone with information on the truck to come forward and contact authorities.

“We urge law enforcement authorities to investigate a possible bias motive for these incidents and to bring the perpetrators to justice,” said CAIR-CT Executive Director Tark Aouadi. “No family should be made to feel targeted or unwelcome due to their faith or background.”

He said CAIR has witnessed an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR-CT Executive Director Tark Aouadi, 860-341-2247, tark.aouadi@cair.com


CAIR-Minnesota: Community Groups to Present $30,000 to Vandalized East African Immigrant Businesses

(MINNEAPOLIS, MN, 11/15/19) – Later today, CAIR-Minnesota, Main Street Alliance of Minnesota and Seward Community Co-op will hold a news conference in Minneapolis to present community-collected funds to support vandalized East African immigrant businesses in Seward.

SEE: Minneapolis East African Shops Boost Security After Vandalism

https://www.sahanjournal.com/business-economy/minneapolis-east-african-shops-boost-security-after-vandalism/

WHAT: Community Groups Present Check to Vandalized East African Businesses on Seward Avenue

WHEN: Today, Friday November 15, 2:15 p.m.

WHERE: 2601 E. Franklin Ave, Minneapolis MN 55406

WHO: Community group representatives, affected business leaders will speak at the news conference.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

CONTACT

CAIR-MN Executive Director Jaylani Hussein

6124060070, Jhussein@cair.com 

Corinne Horowitz

State Director, Main Street Alliance of Minnesota

corinne@mainstreetalliance.org 

612-232-1655 

Allison A. Meyer | Advocacy and Governance Specialist

Direct: 612.436.4043 |  ameyer@seward.coop 

 


Good News Alert: CAIR Applauds College Board’s Expansion of AP Exam Schedule to Accommodate Muslim Holiday

(BALTIMORE, MD, 11/14/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), America’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today applauded the College Board for expanding and adjusting the 2021 AP Exam schedule to accommodate Muslim students who observe the religious holiday of Eid. 

[NOTE: Eid ul-Fitr (EED-al-FITTER) marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan, is the first of the two major Muslim holidays. The second holiday, Eid ul-Adha (EED-al-ODD-ha), comes near the end of the Hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca.]

SEE: College Board to expand testing options for AP exam on Muslim holiday (Washington Post) 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/college-board-to-expand-testing-options-for-ap-exam-on-muslim-holiday/2019/11/13/a249f97a-0621-11ea-b17d-8b867891d39d_story.html

“The College Board’s decision to work with us to find a suitable and equitable compromise will allow school boards that give students off on Eid to grant this reasonable religious accommodation to tens of thousands of Muslim students nationwide,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry.“This move demonstrates the integrity of the organization and reflects its commitment to diversity and inclusion.” 

“We fully support students who observe Eid al-Fitr and want to provide flexibility for them and their schools,” said Terry Redican, vice president of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Program. “Offering an additional day of testing helps ensure observant students have the opportunity to test on a day that won’t conflict with other AP exams they may need to take.”

Earlier this month, the civil rights organization sent a letter requesting AP program administrators to avoid scheduling AP exams on Eid Al-Fitr, which is otherwise expected to land on a testing day. 

SEE: CAIR Sends Letter Requesting College Board Avoid Scheduling AP Exams on Eid al-Fitr

https://www.cair.com/cair_sends_letter_requesting_college_board_avoid_scheduling_ap_exams_on_eid_al_fitr


The organization was able to work with CAIR to find a solution that worked from both a logistical and administrative standpoint. 

Some school districts with a significant Muslim population give students the day off for the Islamic holiday, along with Jewish and Christian holidays. This allows students to be able to observe the holiday without being marked absent or missing valuable classroom instruction.

Weeks ago, through conversations with school officials, it was brought to CAIR’s attention that some school boards may not approve closing schools for students on Eid al-Fitr if it coincides with an AP exam date, because it would create an equity issue. 

To resolve that concern and accommodate students’ needs, the College Board will now create an additional testing date in the third week of May for AP exam(s) scheduled on May 13, 2021 - thereby allowing school districts that give students off for the Eid holiday the flexibility of an alternative AP exam date. 

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry, zchaudry@cair.com, 410-971-6062


CAIR Names CAIR-Georgia Leader Edward Ahmed Mitchell as National Deputy Director in D.C.

(WASHINGTON D.C., 11/14/2019) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today announced that CAIR-Georgia Executive Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell has been named national deputy director at the Muslim civil rights organization’s Capitol Hill headquarters in Washington, D.C.

CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad initially made that announcement to community leaders and activists during the Washington-based organization’s Nov. 9 25th anniversary gala.

Video: CAIR Executive Director Announces Appointment of Edward Ahmed Mitchell as Deputy Director

https://youtu.be/L9NE6-yI5_8

Mitchell is an attorney and former journalist who has served as executive director of CAIR’s Georgia chapter since 2016.

Before joining CAIR-Georgia, Mitchell served as a criminal prosecutor for the City of Atlanta. A graduate of Morehouse College and Georgetown University Law Center, Mitchell is also a former editor of Atlanta Muslim, a member of the Georgia Association of Muslim Lawyers, and a member of the board of trustees of the Islamic Community Center of Atlanta. 

As the head of CAIR-Georgia, Mitchell opened the chapter's first office and established its first staff, including a civil rights attorney, paralegal, outreach director, and communications director. Since then, the organization has exposed and resolved dozens of incidents of anti-Muslim discrimination. CAIR-Georgia received CAIR's 2016 Chapter of the Year award.

"Over the past 25 years, CAIR has grown into one of our nation's most diverse, respected and accomplished civil rights organizations,” said Mitchell. “I thank God for the opportunity to help serve the entire American Muslim community at this pivotal moment in our nation's history."

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell, 404-285-9530, eMitchell@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


UPDATE: Tell Senate to Vote No on Islamophobic Judicial Nominee Steven Menashi Who Argues for ‘Ethnonationalism’ Ahead of Impending Vote

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/13/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today renewed its call on all Americans to contact their senators and demand that they vote against Steven Menashi’s nomination to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit because of his support for “ethnonationalism” and for repeating a widely-debunked anti-Muslim conspiracy theory.

CLICK HERE TO TAKE ACTION

Formally nominated in September by President Donald Trump, the Senate voted today to end debate on Menashi’s nomination meaning that a vote will likely take place in coming days.

SEE: White House Lawyer Menashi’s Second Circuit Nomination Advances
https://news.bloomberglaw.com/us-law-week/white-house-lawyer-menashis-second-circuit-nomination-advances

Menashi has argued that “Ethnic ties provide the groundwork for social trust and political solidarity… Social scientists have found that greater ethnic heterogeneity is associate with lower social trust… Ethnically heterogenous societies exhibit less political and civic engagement, less effective governing institutions, and fewer public goods… Surely, it does not serve the cause of liberal democracy to ignore this reality.”

Menashi also repeated the Islamophobic online myth, favored by President Trump, about U.S. Gen. John Pershing executing Muslim prisoners in the Philippines with bullets dipped in “pigs’ blood.” He has also mocked protests against campus rape, denounced LGBTQ rights, and defended a fraternity that threw a racially insensitive party. 

SEE: The controversy over “ethnonationalism” and a Trump judicial nominee, explained
https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/9/12/20858813/steven-mensashi-ethnonationalism-trump-nominee

Video: Trump Judicial Nominee Steven Menashi Argues for Racial Purity, Promotes Islamophobic Hoax
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfLir72vJjo&t=148s     

“The United States Senate should not support a lifetime appointment to anyone with connections to Islamophobia and ethnonationalism,” said CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw. “Because the Supreme Court reviews less than 2 percent of the cases it receives, the courts of appeals, which are one step below the Supreme Court, have enormous power and influence and it is essential that someone with bigoted views not be given such power.”

In August, CAIR demanded President Trump withdraw Menashi’s nomination.

SEE: CAIR Demands Trump Withdraw Judicial Nominee Steven Menashi Who Argues for ‘Ethnonationalism,’ Promotes Islamophobic Hoax
https://www.cair.com/cair_demands_trump_withdraw_judicial_nominee_steven_menashi_who_argues_for_ethnonationalism_promotes_islamophobic_hoax

CAIR has witnessed an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims, immigrants and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president. CAIR has repeatedly expressed concern about Islamophobic, white supremacist and racist Trump administration policies and appointments.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims. 

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END 

CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen, 202-774-0770, aajeen@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com


CAIR Calls for Resignation of Trump Adviser Stephen Miller After Revelation of White Supremacist Emails

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/13/19) - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest American Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called for the resignation of senior adviser to the president Stephen Miller following the Southern Poverty Law Center’s revelation of a series of white supremacist, racist, anti-immigrant, and anti-Muslim emails sent by Miller to Breitbart News.

Breitbart News is a white supremacist mouthpiece that traffics in misogynistic and racist stories targeting women, people of color and immigrants.

SPLC:  Stephen Miller’s Affinity for White Nationalism Revealed in Leaked Emails

“We already knew Stephen Miller, the architect of the Muslim Ban and separating immigrant families at the border and caging their children was a white supremacist. Now we have the emails to back up previous perceptions of his racism and xenophobia,” said CAIR Director of Government Affairs Robert McCaw. “Miller must resign immediately. Bigots should have no place in influencing the direction of our nation’s immigration policy. If President Trump has any sense of decency, he should fire Miller if he does not resign.”

The SPLC’s report sheds light on how President Trump’s senior policy adviser Stephen Miller between 2015 and 2016 sent 900 emails to “Breitbart News” seeking articles that would cover among other things:

  • Literature that includes the white nationalist and neo-Nazi themes of “white genocide” or “great replacement” of whites with nonwhites
  • Include immigration stories that selectively covered of offenses committed by nonwhites
  • Protect the sales of confederate flags on Amazon and protecting Confederate monuments
  • Limit or end immigration, including Muslim migration
  • Allegedly, discuss with anti-Muslim hate leader Pamela Geller, the planning a gay pride parade though Muslim neighborhoods to somehow create division
  • Promote comments made by anti-Muslim reverend Franklin Graham advocating an end to Muslim immigration to the U.S.

In September, CAIR welcomed the firing of former Trump Administration National Security Adviser John Bolton, a man who has strong ties to anti-Muslim extremists. CAIR had previously opposed Bolton’s nomination because of his ties to anti-Muslim bigots and his promotion of extremist views.

SEE: CAIR Condemns Naming of Islamophobe John Bolton as White House National Security Adviser

Last year, CAIR welcomed the resignation of Carl Higbie as the chief of external affairs in the Corporation for National and Community Service, the federal agency that runs AmeriCorps and other service programs. Higbie made remarks disparaging African-Americans, Muslims, immigrants, and other minority groups.

SEE: CAIR Welcomes Resignation of Racist, Anti-Muslim Trump Appointee

In 2017, CAIR welcomed the firing of White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, the former head of Breitbart News. CAIR had called on Republican Party leaders to demand that President Trump dismiss Bannon following revelations that he promoted virulently anti-Muslim conspiracy theories in a 2007 film proposal.

SEE: CAIR Welcomes Firing of Islamophobic White Supremacist Strategist Steve Bannon

That year, CAIR also welcomed the resignation of Michael Flynn as President Trump’s national security adviser following revelations that he misled administration officials about conversations he had with the Russian ambassador to the United States. CAIR previously urged the president not to appoint Flynn to a White House post because of his history of anti-Muslim comments and associations. Flynn has claimed that “Islam is not a real religion, but a political ideology masked behind a religion,” compared Islam to a “cancer,” stated that fear of Muslims is “rational,” and is a current member of the board of advisers for the nation’s most virulent anti-Muslim hate group, ACT for America.

SEE: CAIR Welcomes Resignation of Islamophobic Trump Adviser Michael Flynn

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


UDPATE: CAIR, Jetpac, MPower Change: 38 American Muslim Candidates Win in Nov. 5 Elections for Total of 47 Muslims Elected in 2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/13/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, and Jetpac, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing American Muslim representation in politics and the media, today reported 38 American Muslim electoral victories nationwide in last week’s off-year election. [NOTE: CAIR and Jetpac say these results are preliminary and subject to change.]

Throughout 2019, CAIR and Jetpac have identified at least 47 Muslim candidates who won elections in local and statewide races across the country. More than 90 Muslims ran for office this year at the local and state level.

“These electoral victories clearly indicate that American Muslims are stepping up and showing their commitment to public service,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “We congratulate these Muslim trailblazers who are creating a more inclusive democracy for everyone.”

"American Muslims are running for office in large numbers because more of us are realizing that we have a unique perspective that will help fix massive inequities in healthcare, education, and the criminal legal system,” said Jetpac Executive Director Mohammed Missouri. “We're also aware that staying on the sidelines while anti-Muslim bigotry runs rampant will increase the threat to our community. A truly representative Democracy will help us get out of this dark era as a stronger society.” 

CAIR and Jetpac’s preliminary statistical breakdown of American Muslim candidates running for office in 2019 shows: 

  • 95 Muslim candidates in total ran for an elected office in 2019
    • 33 women
    • 62 men
  • Of those, 47 Muslims won elections in the 2019 calendar year
    • 20 women
    • 27 men
  • Of those, 38 Muslim candidates won their election on Nov. 5
    • 22 of those Muslim candidates a won an election for the first time on Nov. 5
      • 12 women
      • 10 men
    • 16 of those Muslim candidates were incumbents won reelection on Nov. 5
      • 4 women
      • 12 men

CAIR and Jetpac maintain an up-to-date public database of over 500 Muslim candidates that have run for office in the past several years.

SEE: American Muslim Candidate Master List
http://www.islamophobia.org/reports/247-the-rise-of-american-muslim-changemakers.html

On behalf of the American Muslim community, CAIR and Jetpac congratulate the following Muslim candidates on their hard-fought and trailblazing victories:

Maine

  • Pious Ali – Portland City Council (reelection)
  • Marwa Hassanien – Bangor School Board
  • Safiya Khalid – Lewiston City Council

Maryland

  • Fazlul Kabir – College Park City Council (reelection)

Massachusetts

  • Afroz Khan – Newburyport City Council (reelection)
  • Sumbul Siddiqui – Cambridge City Council (reelection)

Michigan

  • Dave Abdallah – Dearborn Heights City Council (reelection)
  • Mohammed Alsomiri – Hamtramck City Council
  • Nayeem Leon Choudhury – Hamtramck City Council
  • Mohammed Hassan – Hamtramck City Council (served previously but left the council in 2017 to run for Mayor) 

Minnesota

  • Nadia Mohamed – St. Louis Park City Council
  • Abdisalam Adam – Fridley School Board (appointed in 2018 to fill a vacant seat but elected by the public for the first time yesterday)

New Jersey

  • Jamillah Beasley - Irvington Municipal Council (reelection)
  • Mustafa Al-Mutazzim Brent – East Orange City Council (reelection)
  • Yasmin Elshami – Saddle River Board of Education
  • Raghib Muhammad – Montgomery Township Board of Education
  • Denise Sanders – Teaneck Board of Education (reelection)
  • Kaleem Shabazz – Atlantic City - City Council (reelection)
  • Adnan Zakaria – Prospect Park City Council (reelection)
  • Esllam Zakaria – Prospect Park Board of Education (reelection)

Ohio

  • Shammas Malik – Akron City Council
  • Omar Tarazi – Hilliard City Council

Pennsylvania

  • Rochelle Bilal – Philadelphia City Sheriff
  • Nusrat Rashid – Delaware County Court of Common Pleas
  • Omar Sabir – Philadelphia City Commission
  • Sheikh Siddique – Upper Darby Township Council (reelection)

Virginia

  • Buta Biberaj – Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney
  • Ghazala Hashmi – Senate District 10
  • Babur Lateef – Prince William County School Board (reelection)
  • Harris Mahedavi – Loudon County School Board
  • Abrar Omeish – Fairfax County School Board
  • Sam Rasoul – House of Delegates District 11 (reelection)
  • Ibraheem Samirah – House of Delegates District 86 (reelection)
  • Lisa Zargarpur – Prince William County School Board

Washington

  • Turan Kayaoglu – Puyallup School Board
  • Riaz Khan – Mukilteo City Council
  • Varisha Khan – Redmond City Council
  • Zahra Roach – Pasco City Council

In July, CAIR, Jetpac and MPower Change released an updated version of their report, ‘The Rise of American Muslim Changemakers,’ documenting the 323 American Muslims who at that time ran for public office since the election of Donald Trump in 2016 and the subsequent rise in anti-Muslim bigotry. CAIR and Jetpac note that as of this posting, the number of American Muslims who have run for office since 2016 is 363.

SEE: CAIR, MPower Change and Jetpac Release Updated Report on Muslim Political Mobilization in the Trump Era
https://www.cair.com/cair_mpower_change_and_jetpac_release_updated_report_on_muslim_political_mobilization_in_the_trump_era

The report includes profiles of those who ran for office during 2018 and 2019, including newly-elected Pennsylvania State Representative Movita Johnson-Harrell, Virginia State Delegate Dr. Ibraheem Samirah and Montgomery (New Jersey) Township Mayor Sadaf Jaffer, among many others elected in 2019.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

Jetpac (Justice Education Technology Political Advocacy Center) is a training and educational organization that seeks to build a strong American Muslim political infrastructure and increase the community’s influence and engagement.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com


CAIR to Oppose Motion to Dismiss Fikre v. FBI Watchlist Case in Oregon Federal Court

(PORTLAND, OREGON, 11/13/2019) – On Thursday, Nov. 14, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, will be presenting arguments in the watchlist case Fikre v. FBI in an Oregon federal court.

CAIR will be opposing the government’s motion to dismiss the case, which seeks to re-litigate Fikre’s victory last year before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

SEE:  CAIR, CAIR-Oregon Welcome Federal Appeals Court Decision to Allow No-Fly List Claims to Proceed 

https://www.cair.com/cair_cair_oregon_welcome_federal_appeals_court_decision_to_allow_no_fly_list_claims_to_proceed

READ THE COMPLAINT: https://tinyurl.com/FikreComplaint

Fikre originally sued to get off the No-Fly List in 2013, alleging he was placed on it and then tortured by a foreign government because he refused to become an FBI informant.  Fikre ended up stranded overseas for nearly five years. 

Portland Man: I was tortured in UAE for refusing to become an FBI Informant  
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/mar/16/portland-man-tortured-uae-behest-of-fbi  

WHAT:  CAIR court hearing on watchlist case Fikre v. FBI

WHEN:  Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 10:00 a.m.

WHERE: Courtroom 16

Chief Judge Michael W. Mosman

Mark O. Hatfield United States Courthouse

1000 Southwest Third Avenue

Portland, Oregon 97204

WHO: CAIR Senior Litigation Attorney Gadeir Abbas, 720-251-0425, gabbas@cair.com; CAIR-Oregon Spokesperson Zakir Khan, 626-502-8450, zkhan@cair.com; Attorney Brandon Mayfield, (503) 941-5101, mayfieldbrandon@hotmail.com

Following the hearing, CAIR representatives will be available to comment.

CAIR’s mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

END

CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com


CAIR Submits Testimony Urging Md. Montgomery County Public Schools to Uphold Commitment to Eid Equality

(BALTIMORE, MD, 11/13/19) — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, yesterday submitted testimony urging Maryland’s Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Board of Education and Superintendent to add the Islamic holiday of Eid back to the academic calendar for the 2020-21 school year. 

Despite the board’s decision in 2015 to close schools for students on days when Eid lands on a school day, none of the three proposed MCPS calendars being considered for the 2020-21 school year include a day off on May 13, 2021 for the holiday.

The school board has cited concerns over a potential conflict with the College Board’s AP exam schedule and is awaiting a response from the AP Program administrators to their request to not schedule AP exams on this date. 

The written testimony by CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry stated in part: 

Tens of thousands of Muslim students attend MCPS, and unfortunately our communities are wondering once again whether they will have to make the difficult decision of choosing between their commitment to excellence in education, and their faith.

“I understand that a potential conflict with the 2021 AP exam schedule is a concern, and would like to recognize the Board President Ms. Shebra Evans and Superintendent Dr. Jack Smith’s letter dated November 5, 2019 to the College Board requesting that May 13, 2021 be excluded as an AP exam administration date. Numerous intra- and interfaith allies have also contacted this body with the same request, or are in the process of doing so.

“In our written and verbal communications with the College Board, CAIR proposed a compromise solution requesting consideration for exam administrators to offer the dozen or so school systems which close for Eid the flexibility to move the exam date to the following week in 2021 if necessary.

“We are optimistic that a resolution will be reached; however, based on the College Board’s schedule, a decision may not be made before you vote on the 2020-21 academic calendar.

“To that end, CAIR respectfully urges you to follow in the example of school systems in Baltimore and Howard Counties, and make a permanent decision to close schools for students on Eid when it lands on a school day in the future.”

Earlier this month, CAIR also contacted the College Board with the same request, in order to achieve equity and remove any obstacles for the dozen or so school districts that close nationally for students on Eid.  

SEE: CAIR Sends Letter Requesting College Board Avoid Scheduling AP Exams on Eid al-Fitr

https://www.cair.com/cair_sends_letter_requesting_college_board_avoid_scheduling_ap_exams_on_eid_al_fitr

Last week, the Baltimore County Board of Education came to a historic, unanimous decision to close public schools for students on Eid holidays on the rare occasions when they land on a school day. The county is home to thousands of Muslim students who attend public schools.

SEE: CAIR Applauds Maryland School Board’s Decision to Close Schools on Muslim Holiday

https://www.cair.com/cair_applauds_maryland_school_board_s_decision_to_close_schools_on_muslim_holiday

Howard County public schools have also approved a day off for Eid on the 2020-21 academic calendar. 

“CAIR is working with the College Board to achieve a compromise,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry. “Meanwhile, we urge the school board to follow through on its commitment to inclusivity and equity and approve adding Eid back to the academic calendar. In a pluralistic society like ours where people of different faiths and backgrounds are increasingly impacted by school policies and decisions, it’s critical for school boards to consistently demonstrate equal and fair treatment of its diverse student body.”

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

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CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry, zchaudry@cair.com,410-971-6062