(New York, NY 10/31/16) â€“ The New York Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, supported a Federal Judgeâ€™s ruling calling for greater protections against warrantless NYPD surveillance of the Muslim community.Â Judge Haight, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, found that the proposed NYPD settlement provided insufficient protections in light of the NYPDâ€™s pattern of unlawful surveillance of Muslim New Yorkers.
In the October 28th ruling, which was published today, Judge Haight found the proposed settlement did not â€œfurnish sufficient protection from potential violations of the constitutional rights of those law-abiding Muslims and believers in Islam . . . .â€ The Judge further noted evidence that the NYPD Intelligence Bureau had â€œa systemic inclinationâ€ to disregard existing surveillance limits, finding â€œprobable causeâ€ that the NYPD intelligence practices had broken the law.
â€œWe support the courtâ€™s call for greater protection of the Muslim community, and weâ€™re pleased to see it adopt so many of the positions we and other advocates advanced,â€ said CAIR-NY Executive Director Afaf Nasher.Â â€œWe hope that by returning to the negotiating table, the plaintiffs can secure more justice than the existing settlement provided.â€
â€œThis ruling stands as a powerful rejection of the NYPDâ€™s pattern of unlawful and unconstitutional surveillance,â€ said CAIR-Director of Strategic Litigation Albert Fox Cahn. â€œThe court recognized that stronger safeguards are needed to restrain an Intelligence Bureau that violated the rights of so many for so long.â€
The Courtâ€™s ruling turned largely on the New York Office of the Inspector Generalâ€™s August 23rd, 2016, Investigation of NYPDâ€™s Compliance with rules Governing Investigations of Political Activity.Â That report found that 95% of investigations were targeted at Muslims or political causes associated with Islam, and that investigations typically exceeded the time limits allowed by the existing federal consent decree.
Among other changes, Judge Haight suggested that the parties expand the power and autonomy of the Civilian Representative on the panel overseeing NYPD surveillance and that the Civilian Representative provide more frequent updates to the court.
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.
La misiÃ³n de CAIR es mejorar la comprensiÃ³n del Islam, fomentar el diÃ¡logo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensiÃ³n mutua.
– END –
CONTACT: CAIR-NY Executive Director Afaf Nasher, 917-669-4006, firstname.lastname@example.org; Director of Strategic Litigation Albert Cahn, 571-766-6273, email@example.com,Â CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, firstname.lastname@example.org.