(NEW YORK, N.Y., 6/2/2021) – The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned an apparent bias-motivated attack on a 13-year-old Sikh boy who was allegedly targeted due to his religious attire.
The boy is a member of the Sikh faith and wears a turban. Suffolk Police are investigating the incident as a hate crime.
On June 1, 2021, the youth was at a Walt Whitman Shop in Syosset, Long Island when he was reportedly attacked by a group of teenagers. He was allegedly subjected to racial slurs and repeated punches. He was also called “Mohamed,” indicating the teens perceived him as a Muslim.
SEE: Attack on 13-year-old boy at Walt Whitman Shops deemed a hate crime
The victim reported that he is a victim of bullying at school, and his father stated he too has been targeted due to his appearance.
In a statement, Afaf Nasher, executive director of CAIR-NY, said:
“We are relieved that this child was not seriously injured and welcome the Suffolk County Police investigation of this deplorable act of violence as a hate crime. We applaud the young boy’s and his family’s courage to speak out about this hate incident. Too often, our Sikh brothers and sisters are targeted in hate crimes and other forms of discrimination.
We are also disturbed that the young boy has been bullied at his school. His school must address this bullying and provide a safe learning environment for him and others. No one should be bullied or targeted due to their appearance or faith.
We are unfortunately seeing a rise in bias incidents throughout the state and call on Suffolk County to do more than investigate. Teenagers need to be taught the value of diversity and inclusion and the educational materials must come from sources that can present the information in a culturally competent manner. Too often we see schools engage in diversity and inclusion but fail to center the right voices and generally present the information in an insensitive or harmful manner.”
Nasher further stated this is the second hate crime in Suffolk County in as many weeks.
SEE: CAIR-NY Condemns Pro-Trump Hate Crime Targeting Mosque in Suffolk County
CAIR-New York is a chapter of 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.