(TAMPA, FL, 3/30/2020) – The Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Florida), the state’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization, today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate the second neo-Nazi vandalism incident in less than a week, this time targeting the Bernie Sanders’ campaign offices in Florida.
Media reports highlighted a swastika spray-painted on the office walls and windows along with the words “Voting couldn’t stop us last time.” Similar messages were found less than a week ago at the Guatemalan Maya Center in Lake Worth Beach, Fla.
- Bernie Sanders’ Florida campaign office vandalized with swastikas (https://forward.com/fast-forward/442653/bernie-sanders-florida-campaign-office-vandalized-with-swastikas/ )
- Sanders’ Florida campaign office vandalized with swastikas (https://www.i24news.tv/en/news/international/americas/1585477521-bernie-sanders-campaign-office-in-florida-vandalized-with-swastikas)
- Guatemalan Maya Center in Lake Worth Beach targeted in possible hate crime ( https://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/20200326/new-guatemalan-maya-center-in-lake-worth-beach-targeted-in-possible-hate-crime )
- Guatemalan-Maya Center in Lake Worth Beach sprayed with racist graffiti (https://www.wptv.com/news/region-c-palm-beach-county/lake-worth/guatemalan-maya-center-in-lake-worth-beach-sprayed-with-racist-graffiti)
In a statement, CAIR-Florida Executive Director Hassan Shibly said: “A second neo-Nazi hate crime in less than a week cannot be our new normal. Just a few days ago we were denouncing a similar hate crime at the Maya Center. This second hate crime targeted a prominent American Jewish politician – Bernie Sander’s – office.”
Shibly added: “We call on all religious communities to be alert for these types of hate crimes. Hate groups and individuals want to take advantage of the health pandemic to prey and instill fear on what they perceive as vulnerable communities. We call upon the local and Federal law enforcement agencies to investigate these heinous acts as hate crimes.”
Nationwide, #CAIR is urging community leaders to implement safety measures outlined in its booklet, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety, (https://cairflorida.org/mediacenter/resources/129-safety-security/515-best-practices-for-mosque-and-community-safety )” which was published in response to previous attacks on American mosques.
The booklet is designed to be used by mosque officials, Muslim school administrators and other community leaders and activists who seek to identify and eliminate vulnerabilities to bias-motivated attacks. A free copy of CAIR’s “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety,” may be found in the link or may be requested by contacting CAIR-Florida.
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: WILFREDO AMR RUIZ, Esq. Communications Director; T: 954.272.0490 ext. 130 F: 954.272.0491 C: 305.502.6749