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CAIR Welcomes Expansion of Hate Crime Bill by Maryland State Legislature

(BALTIMORE, MD, 3/20/20) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today welcomed the Maryland General Assembly passing a bill that would expand the definition of what constitutes a hate crime. 

That bill would make it illegal to depict or display a noose, Nazi swastika or other hate symbols without consent, on public or private property, with the express intent to intimidate an individual or group. 

It makes such crimes punishable by fines up to $5,000 and imprisonment up to three years. If the act leads to the death of a victim, the crime would be punishable by fines up to $20,000 and 20 years in prison. 

“This measure will help deter hate crimes and bias-motivated incidents in our state and ensure better accountability for perpetrators of these crimes,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Zainab Chaudry. “We are proud to stand with lawmakers and allies who supported this critical bill.”  

Earlier this year, CAIR testified in support of the bill. Other witnesses who testified in support of the bill included Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman, State’s Attorney Anne Colt Leitess, and representatives from the ACLU of Maryland, NAACP Maryland StateConference, and other organizations. 

SEE: CAIR Offers Testimony on Hate Crimes Bill in Maryland State Legislature

SEE: House Bill 5 – Hate Crimes – Use of An Item or Symbol to Threaten or Intimidate (Maryland General Assembly 2020 Session) 

Maryland Expands Definition of Hate Crime In Honor of Slain Black Student


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 comprensióndel Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.


CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry,, 410-971-6062

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