(SACRAMENTO, CA, 2/1/17) – The Sacramento Valley chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SV) today called on local officials and interfaith partners to show support for a mosque targeted by hate vandalism.
Worshipers at the Tarbiya Institute in Roseville, Calif., discovered anti-Muslim slurs on the facility today after early morning prayers.
“Just as we have been disturbed by the rising number of hate incidents targeting Muslims in California and nationwide, we have been encouraged by the positive community responses in support of those targeted by bigotry,” said CAIR-SV Executive Director Basim Elkarra. “We hope the Sacramento-area community will offer similar support to the families that worship at the Tarbiya institute.”
Elkarra noted that earlier this week, CAIR’s national office condemned a terror attack on a Canadian mosque by a suspect who had expressed anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiments on social media.
He said CAIR-SV recently called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate the apparent bias motive for vandalism targeting a local mosque and offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator.
Tarbiya Institute Statement:
“This morning Fajr worshippers at the Roseville Tarbiya House arrived to an unpleasant surprise: Anti-Islam spray paint over the walls, front and back.
“We refuse to believe that this is reflective of the sentiment in our community. We have experienced nothing but love and compassion. Our neighbors have been outpouring support over the last few weeks, and this morning many of them were in tears at the sight of the graffiti tainting the walls.
“Nonetheless, we at Tarbiya believe that this incident is a microcosm of a sinister spirit that has been perpetuating our country, and sponsored by people in power. This spirit emboldens some who are full of hate to actually take action. Spray paint is a lot less harmful than murdering worshippers at the mosque or burning it to the ground.
“In order to stop this negativity from growing, all of us, people of faith and people of no faith, need to stand against this type of behavior everywhere we witness it. On the dinner table, on social media, at the workplace, wherever.”
CAIR’s national headquarters in Washington, D.C., has noted an unprecedented spike in hate incidents targeting Muslims and other minority groups since the November 8 election.
A soon-to-be-published CAIR report on Islamophobia in America is expected to show that 2016 was the worst year on record for incidents in which mosques were targets of bias.
CAIR is urging American Muslims and Islamic institutions to take extra security precautions and is offering Muslim community leaders free copies of its booklet, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety.” The booklet may be requested through CAIR’s website: http://www.cair.com/mosque-safety-guide.html
The Washington-based Muslim civil rights group is also asking Muslim community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR’s Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/civil-rights/report-an-incident/view/form.html
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.
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CONTACT: CAIR-SV Operations Manager Danna Elneil, 916-441-6269, email@example.com; CAIR-SV Executive Director Basim Elkarra, 916 289-3748, firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202.744.7726 email@example.com