Press Releases

NY Muslim Groups Call Ray Kelly Award a ‘Cheap PR Stunt’

Ray-Kelly(NEW YORK, N.Y., 12/12/13) – The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY), along with other Muslim and civil rights organizations, today called NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly's recent award from the Muslim Advisory Council a “cheap public relations stunt” showing a falsified image of the New York Muslim community applauding Kelly and his past actions.

SEE: Muslim Community Honors Ray Kelly

“Muslims represent a broad range of opinions on almost every matter, whether theological, political or otherwise,” said CAIR-NY Board President Ryan Mahoney. “While there may be a tiny minority of Muslims who do support Ray Kelly's actions — those who are perhaps unaware of the damage done by NYPD predatory policing — the vast majority of Muslim New Yorkers do not support or applaud his ineffective and biased policies.”

In August 2013, CAIR-NY, along with a number of other civil rights organizations, urged the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to investigate reported violations of the constitutional rights of Muslims by the New York City Police Department (NYPD). That request came following new revelations by The Associated Press (AP) that the NYPD “has secretly labeled entire mosques as terrorism organizations, a designation that allows police to use informants to record sermons and spy on imams, often without specific evidence of criminal wrongdoing.”

CAIR-NY, Rights Groups to Seek DOJ Probe of NYPD 'Terror' Designation for Mosques

From some leaders in the NYC Muslim Community:

“Under Commissioner Kelly's watch, NYPD continues to target American Muslims with unwarranted and blanket surveillance and abusing stop question and frisk against communities of color. He has been arrogant and unapologetic and is not deserving of our praise. We will continue to fight against these very policies he defended. Kelly's legacy is tainted with criminalization of communities of color, blatant racial profiling and fueling mistrust amongst communities.” Arab American Association of New York's Executive Director Linda Sarsour.

“By no means do the small number of Muslim leaders honoring Ray Kelly represent the more than 800,000 Muslims across the 5 Boroughs of NYC. Muslims are not a monolith nor do they share the same political views. The media and the NYPD should not depict our communities this way.” Muslim Consultative Network's Board President Debbie Almontaser.

“The actions of Ray Kelly these past years have harmed the Muslim community, our religious places were monitored, we were profiled, and we were continuously ignored by him when we spoke out against the discriminatory policing. His leadership should not be awarded when he treated NYC Muslim residents like victims in their own city.” Bronx Muslim Center's Imam Abdelrahman Mohammad.

NYPD Commissioner Kelly has been an adamant propagator of discriminatory policing. CAIR-NY believes that this has led to a decreasing trust of the NYPD especially from those affected, especially by New York Muslims that have been one of the groups at the forefront of such profiling. Kelly has allowed for surveillance of various Muslim groups and student associations, even infiltrating student community trips and events.

SEE: Mapping Muslims: NYPD Spying and its Impact on American Muslims
Video: NYPD Spying and Its Impact on American Muslims

CAIR-NY is a chapter of 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.

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CONTACT: CAIR-NY Director of Operations Sadyia Khalique, 212-870-2202,; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726,  

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