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CAIR-MD Launches ‘Equality for Eid’ Campaign for Muslim School Holidays

(GAITHERSBURG, MD, May 1, 2013) – The Maryland chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MD) today announced the official launch of its “Equality for Eid” (E4E) campaign, a grassroots community-based initiative led by CAIR-MD seeking Montgomery County Public School closing for “Eid” holidays.

The Islamic holiday of Eid ul-Fitr (EED-al-FITTER), or “feast of fast breaking” holiday, marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan. The other major holiday, Eid ul-Adha (EED-al-ODD-ha), or “festival of the sacrifice,” comes at near end of the Hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca. E4E members include Montgomery County parents, students, school staff, businesses, non-profit organizations, and county residents.

Coaliton co-chairs include Anhar Karim, a high school junior who is class president and president of the Montgomery County Muslim Students Association; Mimi Hassanein, Vice President of the Montgomery County Muslim Council and co-chair of the Middle Eastern Advisory Group for Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett; Samira Hussein, long-time CAIR volunteer/activist and Family Service Worker for Pre-K programs for Montgomery County Public Schools; Zaffer Mirza, Board of Trustees Member of Muslim Community Center and Muslim community representative of the Montgomery County Public Schools' “School Calendar Committee”; Mumin Barre, president of the Somali Diaspora Network and Co-Chair of County Executive's African Affairs Advisory Group; and Saqib Ali, CAIR-MD director of government relations and former Maryland State Delegate.

Supporters are being asked to do four things:

  • Sign a petition on the E4E website declaring their support for schools closing on Eid holidays
  • Urge MCPS students and staff to sit out school in solidarity on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 (Eid al-Adha 2013)
  • Visit E4E website and use link to email MCPS Superintendent Joshua Starr and Board of Education members urging them to treat Muslim students and staff equally and fairly
  • Support E4E campaign on social media

Montgomery County Councilmember George Leventhal, who has been working closely with the newly formed coalition on developing an effective, appropriate plan of action, pledged, “Next Eid al-Adha, October 15th, I will keep my son home from school.” The coalition urges all Montgomery County residents to follow suit.

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.

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CONTACT: CAIR-MD Government Relations Director Saqib Ali, sali@cair.com, (301) 660-7640; CAIR-MD Vice President Zainab Chaudry, zchaudry@cair.com, (410) 971-6062

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