Press Releases

MEDIA ADVISORY:  CAIR to Announce Challenge to Federal Government’s Watchlisting System, Including TSA’s Quiet Skies Program

(Washington, DC, 8/7/2018) – On Wednesday Aug. 8, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, will hold a press conference at its Capitol Hill headquarters in Washington, D.C.

At the press conference, CAIR will announce its new constitutional challenge to the federal government’s watchlisting system, including the TSA’s recently revealed Quiet Skies program. 

WHAT: CAIR News Conference

WHO: CAIR Civil Rights Attorneys and Some of the Plaintiffs

WHEN: Wednesday, Aug. 8, 12:00 p.m.

WHERE: CAIR Capitol Hill Headquarters, 453 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, D.C. 20003

CONTACT: CAIR Senior Litigation Attorney Gadeir Abbas, 720-251-0425,; CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri, 248-390-9784,

SEE: Welcome to the Quiet Skies (Boston Globe)

Quiet Skies punishes those who””through family, community or the workplace””have relationships with individuals the federal government has designated as a “known or suspected terrorist.”  The program imposes indiscriminate surveillance upon a designee’s family members, friends, co-workers, and travel companions at airports and on airplanes.

SEE:  Have you gained or lost weight?  Congrats, TSA is tracking you for suspicious activity (USA Today)

The lawsuit’s plaintiffs are more than a dozen innocent American Muslims and their families””people who have not been charged, arrested, or convicted of a terrorism-related crime””from Washington DC, Florida, Michigan, Oregon, Kansas, and New Jersey.

The federal government uses the watchlisting system to, as one judge described it, “transfor[m] a person into a second class citizen, or worse.” 

SEE: Judge Anthony J. Trenga’s Opinion   

Targets of the watchlisting system can be denied the ability to travel by air, subject to invasive and stigmatizing searches and interrogations, detained for hours at border crossings, have their electronics seized, be deprived of the right to purchase a firearm, and have their bank accounts closed””in addition to other innumerable consequences that flow from the government’s secretive watchlists.

The watchlist, as a whole, singles out innocent Muslims.  The stigmatizing label of “terrorist” impairs their family, religious, business and employment relationships regardless of their innocence. 

CAIR has filed multiple challenges to the government’s watchlisting system along with multiple lawsuits to allow Americans who are subject to the system’s flight ban return to the United States. 

SEE: CAIR-Florida Helps Muslim Citizen on No-Fly List to Successfully Return to Florida

 Cair Holds News Conference for Return of Utah Imam Abdi After Lawsuit Challenging No-Fly List

If you or your friends or family have experienced significant and invasive travel delays, please file a report with our Civil Rights Department at  

CAIR launched an app to share critical “know your rights” information and to simplify the process to report hate crimes and bias incidents. CAIR is urging American Muslims and members of other minority groups to download the app and utilize this resource to stay informed and empowered.

For a quick download of CAIR’s civil rights app, click here:

CAIR is 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.


CONTACT: CAIR Senior Litigation Attorney Gadeir Abbas, 720-251-0425,; CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri, 248-390-9784,

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