CAIR-OK Releases First-Ever Comprehensive Guide to Oklahoma Muslim Community

(OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, 11/7/2019) -- The Oklahoma Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) today announced the release of its first “Guide to Islam and Muslims in Oklahoma.”

CAIR-OK’s new publication contains information about Islamic theology, common Muslim religious practices, an overview of Islamic centers and schools in the state, and documentation of social and civic involvement of the Oklahoma Muslim community. Additionally, the guide provides information on the history of Islamophobia in Oklahoma, including examples of discrimination, anti-Muslim propaganda, harassment, and physical violence directed at Muslims.

“This guide presents an opportunity for our fellow Oklahomans to understand the Islamic faith and the diverse community of Muslims in our state,” saidCAIR-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani. “It is our hope that elected officials, journalists, academics, and many more will use this as a resource to build bridges between communities and dispel myths and misunderstandings about the world’s second largest religion.”

“While our years in operation in Oklahoma have shown us many examples of Islamophobia, bigotry, and hatred, they have also been years of growth in our interfaith and social justice missions,” said Soltani. “We hope that this guide can open more opportunities to shed light on ignorance and gain a better understanding of the realities of Islam and Muslims in Oklahoma.”

SEE: Guide to Islam and Muslims in Oklahoma

https://www.cairoklahoma.com/resource/guide-to-islam-and-muslims-in-oklahoma/

CAIR-OK’s new guide is being released in advance of the anticipated rise of Islamophobia expected during the 2020 election cycle. Islamophobia has peaked in recent election years, with the 2016 Presidential elections showing an increase in anti-Muslim rhetoric from candidates and hate crimes against Muslims, including damage to mosques and physical violence, surging post-election.

SEE: 2018 CAIR National Civil Rights Report: Targeted

https://www.cairoklahoma.com/resource/targeted/

The information in this guide is designed to assist the reader in having a better understanding of the Islamic faith and Muslim community in Oklahoma. This is a first of its kind guide compiled over the course of several years documenting the growing diversity of Oklahoma’s Muslim community and the many contributions that Muslims make to the state. It should be noted that it is intended only as a guide, and individual observances may vary.

In 2017, the CAIR-OK Civil Rights Department also produced Guides to Islamic Religious Practices for educators and for healthcare professionals, joining the guides for employers that were released in 2016. The guides outline basic Islamic religious practices and suggest best practices for teachers, administrators, and healthcare professionals to use in supporting their Muslim students, clients, patients, and families. The guides are all available free of charge from the Civil Rights Department.

SEE: Healthcare Provider’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices

https://www.cairoklahoma.com/resource/the-healthcare-providers-guide-to-islamic-religious-practices/

SEE: Educator’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices

https://www.cairoklahoma.com/resource/an-educators-guide-to-islamic-religious-practices/

SEE: Employer’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices

https://www.cairoklahoma.com/resource/an-empoyers-guide-to-islamic-religious-practices/

For a physical copy of the Civil Rights Report or the Guides to Islamic Religious Practices, contact CAIR-OK at info@ok.cair.com.

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

END

CONTACT: Adam Soltani, CAIR-OK Executive Director, 405-248-5853, asoltani@cair.com; Natasha Saya, CAIR-OK Community Outreach Director, 405-887-8354. nsaya@cair.com


CAIR-Columbus Reunites Family After Filing Lawsuit Against US Embassy in Islamabad

(COLUMBUS, OH, 11/7/19) – The Columbus, Ohio, chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Columbus) announced today the successful resolution of a lawsuit against the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad for unreasonably delaying an immigrant visa for the Pakistani husband of a U.S. citizen.

Irum, a U.S. citizen, met Ahmad in Lahore, Pakistan in 2013. They got married in 2016. The couple filed the appropriate applications immediately thereafter. The USCIS approved their petition, and the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad interviewed Ahmad. However, his visa application was put on “administrative processing” without any further explanation.

Three years passed without Ahmad receiving his immigrant visa, forcing him and his wife to live apart. The couple contacted the embassy dozens of times pleading with them to process Ahmad’s application.

The family also contacted the office of their congressional representative to seek help in expediting the visa processing. However, none of these efforts were successful. The U.S. Embassy gave no guidance as to why the application was not being processed.

For three years, the couple put their lives and careers on hold and faced significant financial strain as Irum had to frequently travel to Pakistan to spend time with her husband.

In desperation, the family contacted CAIR-Columbus to seek assistance in this matter. CAIR-Columbus filed a federal mandamus lawsuit against the U.S. Department of State in order to force the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad to process the application.

The lawsuit was successfully resolved three months later with Ahmad receiving his visa, which finally allowed him to travel to the U.S. and reunite with his wife.  

“Nobody should be forced to be away from their spouse for years for no legitimate reason. Immigration benefits should not be held hostage, and no one should be forced to resort to lawsuits to obtain a benefit which is their legal right,” said their attorney Romin Iqbal of CAIR-Columbus.  

The couple said that they are extremely indebted to CAIR-Columbus because their long ordeal is finally over and they are now ready to move on with their lives.

Muslims in Ohio who are facing similar delays are urged to contact CAIR-Columbus for assistance by filing an incident report online.

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its 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 comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

The CAIR-Ohio Affiliate has three chapters – Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati.

END

CONTACT: CAIR-Columbus Executive Director Romin Iqbal, Esq., 614-783-7953, riqbal@cair.com


Action Alert: Only a Few Tickets Left for CAIR’s 25th Anniversary Gala This Weekend in Washington, D.C.

There are only a few tickets left for CAIR’s 25th anniversary gala to be held Saturday, November 9, at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C.

Online registration for the gala will end Friday, so time is running out to purchase your tickets. In past years, the annual banquet has sold out. No tickets will be sold at the door, so register TODAY to make sure you don’t miss out.

The gala will feature special guest Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), political commentator Dean Obeidallah, activist and community leader Linda Sarsour, State Representative Movita Johnson-Harrell (D-PA), and motivational speaker Abderraoof Alkhawaldeh.

REGISTRATION: Individual tickets cost $85 (Student $65). Childcare is $35 per child. Childcare registration is required for children under 13 years old. No children under 13 are allowed inside the banquet hall.

TO REGISTER, GO TO: https://www.cair.com/25th_anniversary_banquet

With the theme “Defending, Educating, and Empowering: Building the Next Generation of American Muslims,” the gala will celebrate CAIR’s 25 years of service to the community.

[NOTE: Use #CAIRSnapshots on Twitter to view all the short videos highlighting CAIR’s important work over the past quarter century.]

Reserve a Table(s) of 10:

Banquet tables for a family, business, mosque, or other group, may be reserved by calling 202-742-6454 or by emailing events@cair.comA table of 10 costs $1500. 

Disclaimer: All funds solicited in connection with this event are for CAIR, and not for Ilhan Omar or Ilhan Omar for Congress.

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.

END

CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen, 202-774-0770, aajeen@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 

 


#CAIRSnapshots Video: In 2018, CAIR Wins Ramadan Victory for Muslim Inmates in Alaska, Organizes Tour of Civil Rights Memorial by Muslim Leaders, Challenges Family Separation at Border

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/7/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today released the latest “CAIR Snapshots” video highlighting a quarter century of “defending, educating and empowering the American Muslim community.”

[NOTE: Use #CAIRSnapshots on Twitter to view all the short videos highlighting CAIR’s important work over the past quarter century.]

Today’s snapshot highlights how in 2018, CAIR announced a federal judge’s approval of an agreement between CAIR and Alaska's attorney general that required Muslim inmates observing Ramadan be provided with adequate nutrition. Also in 2018, some 30 CAIR leaders attended the inauguration of the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Ala., and CAIR challenged the Trump’s administration’s policy of separating migrant families at the border.

SEE: #CAIRSnapshots Video: In 2018, CAIR Wins Ramadan Victory for Muslim Inmates in Alaska, Organizes Tour of Civil Rights Memorial by Muslim Leaders, Challenges Family Separation at Border  

https://youtu.be/C6jO4tVpwMg

BACKGROUNDER:

Breaking News: CAIR, Alaska AG Reach Agreement on Feeding Muslim Inmates During Ramadan

https://www.cair.com/breaking_news_cair_alaska_ag_reach_agreement_on_feeding_muslim_inmates_during_ramadan

30 CAIR Leaders to Attend Inauguration of Lynching Memorial in Alabama

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/30-cair-leaders-to-attend-inauguration-of-lynching-memorial-in-alabama-300635633.html

Video: CAIR Rep Ibrahim Hooper at Rally for Immigrant Family Reunification in Virginia

https://youtu.be/lqg8qcRux7Q  

The #CAIRSnapshots campaign is just one of many activities and initiatives leading up to CAIR’s 25th anniversary gala in Washington, D.C., on November 9.

Online registration is open for the gala with special guest Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), political commentator Dean Obeidallah, activist and community leader Linda Sarsour, State Representative Movita Johnson-Harrell (D-PA), and motivational speaker Abderraoof Alkhawaldeh.

Past events have been sold out and no tickets are sold at the door -- so register TODAY to reserve your place.

REGISTRATION: Individual tickets cost $85 (Student $65). Childcare is $35 per child. Childcare registration is required for children under 13 years old. No children under 13 are allowed inside the banquet hall.

TO REGISTER, GO TO: https://www.cair.com/25th_anniversary_banquet  

Disclaimer: All funds solicited in connection with this event are for CAIR, and not for Ilhan Omar or Ilhan Omar for Congress.

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

END

CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 

 


CAIR Condemns Racist, Islamophobic, Anti-Immigrant Postcard Distributed in Idaho

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/7/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned a racist, Islamophobic, homophobic and anti-immigrant postcard distributed in North Idaho. 

The postcard depicts three human rights leaders in Coeur d’Alene, including Mayor Steve Widmyer, as clowns holding balloons that mock their dedication to building an inclusive community. Beneath the three leaders, a number of racist, Islamophobic and stereotypical caricatures of various minority communities.

SEE: New racist cartoon attacking diversity paints an ugly picture for Idaho
https://www.idahostatesman.com/opinion/from-the-opinion-editor/article236914243.html

The two “Muslim” figures show a woman wearing a burqa and a man wearing a suicide vest. The other figures include an African-American man with the face of a primate, a gang member meant to represent immigrants and an offensive depiction of transgender woman.

“Intentional attempts to stigmatize minority communities and sow societal division are reprehensible and have no place in Idaho or anywhere in our nation,” said CAIR Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen. “America is what it is today in large part due to the contributions of minority communities.”

The Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization has reported an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president.

SEE: CAIR Condemns Anti-Semitic, White Supremacist, Anti-Immigrant Incidents in Colorado, Tennessee, Wisconsin

https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_anti_semitic_white_supremacist_anti_immigrant_incidents_in_colorado_tennessee_wisconsin

CAIR Condemns Racist Vandalism at University Campus in Maryland

https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_racist_vandalism_at_university_campus_in_maryland

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.

END

CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen, 202-774-0770, aajeen@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


CAIR-Minnesota to Call for Hate Crime Probe of Attack on Muslim DoorDash Driver

(MINNEAPOLIS, MN, 11/7/19) – Later today, the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Minnesota) will hold a news conference to call for a hate crime investigation of an alleged bias-motivated attack in the early hours of Sunday October 27 in Excelsior, Minn., targeting a Muslim DoorDash driver.

The driver was allegedly hit repeatedly by a customer shouting “go back to your country” and other Islamophobic, xenophobic and racist slurs. A bystander who witnessed the incident reportedly came to the aid of the victim before law enforcement arrived. The alleged attacker was arrested near the scene of the assault and victim sought medical treatment.

WHAT: CAIR-Minnesota to Call for Hate Crime Probe of Attack on Muslim DoorDash Driver

WHEN: Wednesday, November 7, 3:30 p.m.

WHERE: CAIR- Minnesota Office, 2511 East Franklin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55406

CONTACT: CAIR-Minnesota Executive Director Jaylani Hussein, 612-206-3360

The Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization has reported an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president.

SEE: CAIR Condemns Anti-Semitic, White Supremacist, Anti-Immigrant Incidents in Colorado, Tennessee, Wisconsin

https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_anti_semitic_white_supremacist_anti_immigrant_incidents_in_colorado_tennessee_wisconsin

CAIR Condemns Racist Vandalism at University Campus in Maryland

https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_racist_vandalism_at_university_campus_in_maryland

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.

END

CONTACT: CONTACT: CAIR-MN Executive Director Jaylani Hussein, 612-206-3360, jhussein@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen, 202-774-0770, aajeen@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


CAIR, Jetpac, MPower Change: 26 American Muslim Candidates Win in Nov. 5 Elections for Total of 34 Muslims Elected in 2019

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/6/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, and Jetpac, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing American Muslim representation in politics and the media, and MPower Change, one of the largest Muslim-led social and racial justice organizations in the United States, today reported 26 American Muslim electoral victories nationwide in yesterday’s off-year election.

[NOTE: These results are preliminary and subject to change.]

Throughout 2019, CAIR, Jetpac and MPower Change have identified at least 34 Muslim candidates who won elections in local and statewide races across the country. More than 80 Muslims ran for office this year at the local and state level.

“These electoral victories clearly indicate that American Muslims are stepping up and showing their commitment to public service,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “We congratulate these Muslim trailblazers who are creating a more inclusive democracy for everyone.”

"American Muslims are running for office in large numbers because more of us are realizing that we have a unique perspective that will help fix massive inequities in healthcare, education, and the criminal legal system,” said Jetpac Executive Director Mohammed Missouri. “We're also aware that staying on the sidelines while anti-Muslim bigotry runs rampant will increase the threat to our community. A truly representative Democracy will help us get out of this dark era as a stronger society.” 

"What do Muslim Americans do during a time of heightened Islamophobia under a xenophobic administration? We run for office and win," said MPower Change's Executive Director Linda Sarsour. "Muslim Americans are engaging in the democratic process in unprecedented ways and we can't wait to continue this wave in 2020 to save our democracy."

CAIR, Jetpac, and MPower Change’s preliminary statistical breakdown of American Muslim candidates running for office in 2019 shows: 

  • 81 Muslim candidates in total ran for an elected office in 2019
    • 29 women
    • 52 men
  •  Of those, 34 Muslims won elections in the 2019 calendar year
    • 16 women
    • 18 men
  •  Of those, 26 Muslim candidates won their election yesterday
    • 13 of those Muslim candidates a won an election for the first time yesterday
      • 7 women
      • 6 men
    • 13 of those Muslim candidates were incumbents won reelection yesterday
      • 5 women
      • 8 men

CAIR, Jetpac, and MPower Change maintain an up-to-date public database of over 500 Muslim candidates that have run for office in the past several years.

SEE: American Muslim Candidate Master List
http://www.islamophobia.org/reports/247-the-rise-of-american-muslim-changemakers.html

On behalf of the American Muslim community, CAIR, Jetpac, and MPower Change congratulate the following Muslim candidates on their hard-fought and trailblazing victories:

Maine

  • Pious Ali – Portland City Council (reelection)
  • Safiya Khalid– Lewiston City Council

Maryland

  • Fazlul Kabir – College Park City Council (reelection)

Massachusetts

  • Mehreen Butt – Wakefield Town Council (reelection)
  • Afroz Khan – Newburyport City Council (reelection)
  • Sumbul Siddiqui – Cambridge City Council (reelection)

Minnesota

  • Nadia Mohamed– St. Louis Park City Council
  • Abdisalam Adam – Fridley School Board (appointed in 2018 to fill a vacant seat but elected by the public for the first time yesterday)

New Jersey

  • Jamillah Beasley - Irvington Municipal Council (reelection)
  • Mustafa Al-Mutazzim Brent – East Orange City Council (reelection)
  • Denise Sanders – Teaneck Board of Education (reelection)
  • Raghib Muhammad – Montgomery Township Board of Education
  • Adnan Zakaria – Prospect Park City Council (reelection)
  • Esllam Zakaria – Prospect Park Board of Education (reelection)

Ohio

  • Omar Tarazi – Hilliard City Council

Pennsylvania

  • Omar Sabir – Philadelphia City Commission

Virginia

  • Buta Biberaj– Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney
  • Ghazala Hashmi– Senate District 10
  • Babur Lateef – Prince William County School Board (reelection)
  • Harris Mahedavi – Loudon County School Board
  • Abrar Omeish– Fairfax County School Board
  • Sam Rasoul – House of Delegates District 11 (reelection)
  • Ibraheem Samirah – House of Delegates District 86 (reelection)
  • Lisa Zargarpur – Prince William County School Board

Washington

  • Turan Kayaoglu – Puyallup School Board
  • Zahra Roach – Pasco City Council

In July, CAIR, Jetpac and MPower Change released an updated version of their report, ‘The Rise of American Muslim Changemakers,’ documenting the 323 American Muslims who at that time ran for public office since the election of Donald Trump in 2016 and the subsequent rise in anti-Muslim bigotry. CAIR and Jetpac note that as of this posting, the number of American Muslims who have run for office since 2016 is 365.

SEE: CAIR, MPower Change and Jetpac Release Updated Report on Muslim Political Mobilization in the Trump Era
https://www.cair.com/cair_mpower_change_and_jetpac_release_updated_report_on_muslim_political_mobilization_in_the_trump_era

The report includes profiles of those who ran for office during 2018 and 2019, including newly-elected Pennsylvania State Representative Movita Johnson-Harrell, Virginia State Delegate Dr. Ibraheem Samirah and Montgomery (New Jersey) Township Mayor Sadaf Jaffer, among many others elected in 2019.

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.

Jetpac (Justice Education Technology Political Advocacy Center) is a training and educational organization that seeks to build a strong American Muslim political infrastructure and increase the community’s influence and engagement.

MPower Change is one of the largest Muslim-led social and racial justice organizations in the United States. Rooted in the Islamic faith and the Prophetic model, it believes in building a more just world for all people.

END

CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


GOOD NEWS ALERT: CAIR Commends South Carolina Jail for Protecting Constitutional Rights of Muslim Detainee Wearing a Hijab

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/6/2019) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today commended the J. Reuben Long Detention Center and Horry County Sheriff’s Department in South Carolina for taking corrective action to address civil rights violations committed by correctional staff against a Muslim American woman who was detained at the facility.

CAIR’s Georgia chapter (CAIR-Georgia) learned that a South Carolina Muslim woman detained at the jail had been forced to expose her hair in the presence of male officers and to pose for booking photographs, which were then published on the Horry County Sheriff’s Department website and a third-party website. Jail staff also reportedly confiscated a prayer rug provided to her by the jail’s chaplain.

After CAIR-Georgia and CAIR National called on the jail to uphold the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious freedom, the facility allowed the Muslim woman to cover her hair with a scarf, gave her a prayer rug and replaced her original booking photos with new photos in which her hair is covered.

 “We thank staff and management at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center for their swift response to the concerns we raised about mistreatment of a Muslim woman detained at the jail,” said Edward Ahmed Mitchell, executive director of CAIR-Georgia. “Even in a jail, every American has the right to freely and safely practice their faith. The First Amendment does not end at the walls of jail.”

“Our organization is steadfast in its efforts to enforce the rule of law as it relates to an individual’s constitutional right to be free from discrimination,” said Ankur Sakaria, staff attorney at CAIR National. “It is essential that we advocate to secure just outcomes for individuals who face hostility, animus, and discriminatory behavior.”

The Washington-based civil rights organization offers an educational toolkit, called "A Correctional Institution’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices," to help correctional officers and administrators gain a better understanding of Islam and Muslims.

SEE: A Correctional Institution’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices
http://tinyurl.com/CAIRCorrectionalGuide

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.

END

CONTACT: CAIR-GA Executive Director Edward Mitchell, emitchell@cair.com, 404-285-9530; CAIR National Litigation Director and General Counsel Lena Masri, lmasri@cair.com, 248-390-9784; CAIR National Staff Attorney Ankur Sakaria, asakaria@cair.com, 202-516-4722; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


CAIR Condemns Racist Vandalism at University Campus in Maryland

(BALTIMORE, MD, 11/6/2019) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), today condemned repeated episodes of offensive graffiti, including racist threats, inside a university building in Maryland.

The graffiti in a Salisbury University building read, “Sandy Hook comes to SU kill [racial slur]”. Many students have expressed their concern about safety on campus following the incident. On Tuesday, students planned to wear all black and march into the library to talk about possible solutions before meeting with the university’s president. 
 
SEE: Repeated acts of vandalism including racist threat worry students at Salisbury University
https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/crime/bs-md-cr-wp-salisbury-university-graffiti-20191106-ar5txoelgnenjjemuertbfaf5i-story.html

“Racist and white supremacist incidents that target students on college campuses have unfortunately become increasingly common,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry. There is absolutely no reason for students to not feel safe on campus. We need to reexamine the rhetoric coming from the highest offices in our country and the influence this has on emboldening individuals to act out their bigoted views.”

Earlier this week, CAIR condemned a series of recent hate incidents nationwide that the Muslim civil rights organization says are tied to President Trump’s “empowerment of hate.”

CAIR condemned an anti-immigrant acid attack on a Hispanic man in Milwaukee, an alleged anti-Semitic plot to bomb a synagogue in Colorado and white supremacist flyers distributed on a Tennessee university campus. CAIR also condemned both the wearing of Ku Klux Klan (KKK) robes and hoods by a group of individuals in Tennessee and the filming of a white supremacist propaganda video at a Mississippi memorial to Emmett Till.

SEE: CAIR Condemns Anti-Semitic, White Supremacist, Anti-Immigrant Incidents in Colorado, Tennessee, Wisconsin

https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_anti_semitic_white_supremacist_anti_immigrant_incidents_in_colorado_tennessee_wisconsin

CAIR Condemns Tenn. Group’s KKK Halloween Costumes, Filming of White Supremacist Propaganda Video at Miss. Emmett Till Memorial
https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_tenn_group_s_kkk_halloween_costumes_filming_of_white_supremacist_propaganda_video_at_miss_emmett_till_memorial

Video: CAIR Condemns Tenn. Group’s KKK Halloween Costumes

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iE3RvaicQ7k

Earlier this year, CAIR condemned the actions of three University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) students who stood with guns in front of a bullet-riddled memorial to Till.

SEE: CAIR Condemns Mississippi Students Posing with Guns in Front of Bullet-Riddled Emmett Till Memorial
https://www.cair.com/cair_condemns_mississippi_students_posing_with_guns_in_front_of_bullet_riddled_emmett_till_memorial

The Washington-based civil rights organization has reported an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims, immigrants and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president.

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

END 

CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry, zchaudry@cair.com, 410-971-6062

 


CAIR Applauds Maryland School Board’s Decision to Close Schools on Muslim Holiday

(BALTIMORE, MD, 11/6/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), American’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today applauded the Baltimore County Board of Education’s unanimous decision to close public schools for students on Eid holidays on the rare occasions when they land on a school day. 

[NOTE: Eid ul-Fitr (EED-al-FITTER) marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan, is the first of the two major Muslim holidays. The second holiday, Eid ul-Adha (EED-al-ODD-ha), comes near the end of the Hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca.]

SEE: Baltimore County School Board approves post-Labor Day start to 2020-2021 school year

https://www.wbaltv.com/article/bcps-school-board-approves-on-2021-school-calendar/29703244

Baltimore County School Board Approves Post Labor Day Start For 2020-21 School Year

https://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2019/11/05/baltimore-county-public-school-start-date-latest/

Baltimore County school board opts for post-Labor Day start, shorter spring break in 2020-21 school year

https://www.baltimoresun.com/maryland/baltimore-county/cng-co-baltimore-school-calendar-vote-20191106-smuaa5cjavfwhf2cvx54wlzvte-story.html

“This historic victory is the culmination of a decades-long battle by local leaders to seek equal recognition for the county’s thousands of Muslim children,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry. “It sends a message to Muslim students and parents that school officials are paying attention to their needs, and that they are valued, seen and heard.”

CAIR acknowledged Student Member of the Board Omer Reshid, and leaders Dr. Basher Firaoun and Muhammed Jamil for tirelessly championing this issue. 

The long-awaited move comes after 30+ years of advocacy and efforts to seek Eid equality, and on the heels of the county’s first Muslim Student Member of the Board being elected to serve in that capacity. 

Eid equality efforts are also underway in Montgomery County, Maryland where the school board agreed in 2015 to close schools for students on Eid but is reportedly considering calendar proposals for the school year 2020-21 which now leave school open on Eid.  

SEE: School leaders in Maryland ask for no AP testing on Muslim holy day

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/school-leaders-in-maryland-ask-for-no-ap-testing-on-muslim-holy-day/2019/11/05/e50f04ee-fa87-11e9-8190-6be4deb56e01_story.html

Last week, CAIR called on the College Board to not schedule AP exams on Eid in 2021 to help local school boards be equitable to all of their student populations.

SEE: CAIR Sends Letter Requesting College Board Avoid Scheduling AP Exams on Eid al-Fitr

https://www.cair.com/cair_sends_letter_requesting_college_board_avoid_scheduling_ap_exams_on_eid_al_fitr

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

END

Contact: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry, zchaudry@cair.com, 410-971-6062