(WASHINGTON, D.C., 10/25/05) – A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group today announced a scholarship to honor the life and work of Rosa Parks, often called the “mother of the civil rights movement,” who died Monday at the age of 92. The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) also offered its condolences to her family, friends and loved ones.
In 1955, Parks defied a rule requiring African-Americans to yield their seats to whites on Montgomery, Ala., buses. Her protest triggered a 381-day boycott of buses, organized by Martin Luther King Jr. His protest movement brought about the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which outlawed racial discrimination in the United States.
CAIR said in a statement: “Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her seat sparked the civil rights movement and continues to inspire all those who struggle for social justice and equality. It is only fitting that a scholarship aimed at advancing the cause of human dignity be offered in her name.”
The annual CAIR “Rosa Parks Civil Liberties Scholarship” will be offered to students studying in fields that promote civil rights, social justice and peaceful resolution of conflicts. Details of the scholarship will be announced at CAIR’s annual dinner in Washington, D.C., on December 3rd.
CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 31 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. 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.
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