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CAIR-NY Files Discrimination Claims for Three Muslim Families Denied Boarding by NYC Ferry, Called ‘Security Issue’

                                     Photo Credit: Vincent Barone 

(NEW YORK, N.Y., 10/16/2019) – The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today filed a discrimination complaint against the NYC Ferry on behalf of Muslim families denied boarding after being referred to as a “security issue.” 
The families bringing the discrimination charges consist of three families: 3 mothers (2 wear hijab, religious headcovering); 2 infants; 4 young boys; and 2 young girls.  The families allege that they were not allowed to board the ferry by NYC Ferry employees because they were labeled as a “security issue.” All other passengers were permitted to board.  The denial of service occurred in public view.  
The families spoke to security at the ferry dock who informed the families that there was no security issue.  The ferry left the families and caused a two-hour delay and eventual cancellation of their plans.  The young children have been traumatized and have asked their parents why they were not allowed to get on the ferry. After filing a complaint with the NYC Ferry, the families were told the situation was a “misunderstanding.”  Because of the incident, a beautiful family fun day turned into one of the worst days of their lives. 
The NYC Ferry is operated by HNY Ferry, LLC through a contract with the NYC Economic Development Corporation.  The City of New York is the owner of NYC Ferry and responsible for the ferry service. 
Read The Discrimination Complaint Filed Against NYC Ferry

CAIR-NY Litigation Director Ahmed Mohamed stated:

“All New Yorkers, regardless of creed, deserve equal and fair service free of discrimination, especially when using public transportation like the NYC Ferry.  These families were humiliated and traumatized in public view and treated as suspect because they happen to be Muslim. That is unacceptable. We hope the City will live up to its commitment of nondiscrimination and swiftly correct this injustice.” 
He noted that CAIR-NY regularly deals with discrimination in public accommodations and workplace.
Last week, CAIR-NY filed a federal discrimination complaint against International Design Services, Inc. (IDS) for “terrorizing” and retaliating against a Muslim employee.  
SEE Press Release and Discrimination Complaint Against IDS
SEE: CAIR-NY Files Discrimination Complaint Over MTA Employee’s Mistreatment of Muslim Traveler
Video: CAIR-NY Files Discrimination Complaint Over MTA Employee’s Mistreatment of Muslim Traveler
New Yorkers may also contact CAIR-NY for assistance by filing an incident report online at or call 646.665.7599. 
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.


CONTACT: CAIR-NY Litigation Director Ahmed Mohamed,, 646-481-2103; CAIR-NY Executive Director Afaf Nasher,, 917-669-4006

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