(ANAHEIM, C.A. 4/15/2015) – Some 280 delegates from more than 20 states met with elected officials and congressional staffers on Arpil 13th during the “historic” first-ever National Muslim Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO), a coalition of leading national and local American Muslim organizations. Muslim delegates from a number of organizations visited 200 congressional offices – one third of the House of Representatives and almost half of the Senate.
Delegates from the state of California included 9 representative of the California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations who participated in about 40 congressional meetings with both, the House and Senate.
Before heading to congressional offices, the Muslim delegates met in the Rayburn House Office Building to learn lobbying tips from political experts.
“It is very inspiring to see the Muslim community make such progress on the road of effective political engagement on a national level.” said CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush. This historic united advocacy day illustrates the effectiveness of the American Muslim community to unite and play a critical role in advocating on policies that positively impact our nation.”
PHOTO: The California Delegation at Muslim Hill Day.
National Muslim Advocacy Day delegates are urging their elected representatives to support issues that address the domestic priorities of the American Muslim community, including:
- Calling on Congress to urge the U.S. Department of Justice to amend its racial profiling guidance for federal law enforcement by removing any existing loopholes that continue to permit profiling in the name of national security, domestic surveillance and policing the border. Many of these programs have disproportionately targeted Latinos, Muslims and other minorities, and raise serious due process concerns.
- Congressional support of federal legislation that prohibits any federal, state, local and Indian tribal law enforcement agency from engaging in profiling on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, national origin or religion.
- Support of federal legislation that addresses the problems our nation is facing with youth violence by strengthening after-school programs.
“This historic united advocacy day marks the coming of age for the American Muslim community on the national political scene,” said Robert McCaw, chairman of the USCMO Advocacy Day Steering Committee. “The education, equality and social justice agenda promoted by National Muslim Advocacy Day delegates is of benefit to all Americans, regardless of background.”
McCaw said National Muslim Advocacy Day exceeded all expectations in terms of nationwide participation by first-time Muslim delegates and of interaction with elected officials and congressional staff.
Founding members of USCMO:
American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), Muslim Alliance in North America (MANA), Muslim American Society (MAS), Muslim Legal Fund of America (MLFA), Muslim Ummah of North America (MUNA), The Mosque Cares (Ministry of Imam W. Deen Mohammed).
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.