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Two Takes on the French Burqini Controversy
T. Smerko, H. Ahmed | Aug.20.09
In this debut edition of Opinion Corner, Thibaud, a French-American intern at CAIR-Chicago, and Hebah, an activist in the Muslim community, express unique perspectives on the French Muslim woman who was denied access to a pool because she was wearing a full-body swim suit.
Meet Our New Staff Members
CAIR-Chicago | Aug.20.09
CAIR-Chicago is proud to welcome our new Operations Coordinator, Hiba Hammadi, and our Web Solutions Fellow, Nizam Alavi. Read about them, as well as our other staff members, here.
Youth Coordinator Reflects on Philippines Youth Leadership Program
Mokaram Rauf | Aug.18.09
CAIR-Chicago Youth Coordinator, Mokaram Rauf, visited the Philippines recently as a part of the U.S. State Department sponsored Philippines Youth Leadership Program (PYLP). Read Mokaram's reflections on the trip and on the merits of this exciting initiative.
The following is a partial list of complaints CAIR-Chicago's Civil Rights Department received or worked to resolve from Aug 1, 2009 - Aug 20, 2009:
•A Muslim man has been attempting to obtain a special use permit to conduct prayer services in a building in West Chicago for at least a year, to no avail.
• CAIR-Chicago continues to receive complaints from the Muslim community regarding the delay in obtaining U.S. citizenship. Our Citizenship Delay project remains active and continues to assist those in the USCIS process.
• A Muslim man who originally came to the US on a student visa in 1996 was granted permanent residency in 2002. After applying for citizenship in March 2007, he was interviewed by an officer who requested that he recite the oath of alliance. Apparently based on his inability to recite the full oath, the officer stated that he failed the English language test. When the man attended a re-interview with an attorney in February 2009, he passed the English and Civics test after three minutes. He has not yet received a decision on his application.
• A Muslim woman believes she is being investigated by law enforcement agents because of her past association with her Lebanese ex-husband and an email she wrote. She has recently sent FOIA requests to the Illinois State Police and Governors State University Police. CAIR-Chicago is determining what action to take in the event of denials of the FOIA requests.
• An Iraqi Muslim chiropractor alleges that the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation pursued false and baseless accusations against him based on race and religion. The Department of Financial & Professional Regulation presented allegations against him stating he was engaged in unlawful practices, but these allegations changed over time.
• A Muslim man sought CAIR-Chicago’s assistance in obtaining religious accommodations in the work place. He has been working as a pharmacist at a hospital for many years but was recently denied the right to attend tarawee prayer (nightly prayers in Ramadan) under a new director. CAIR-Chicago provided the man with materials citing federal law so that he could address the wrongful denial of an accommodation with his employer.
•The homes of Pakistanis and other minorities in Vernon Hills were spray painted with racist graffiti such as "n****rs live here" and "white power." The homeowners contacted the police who are now investigating. CAIR-Chicago is monitoring the police’s response to the incident.
• A Muslim woman was offered an apartment for rent by a landlord pursuant to a public aid program. After the landlord learned that she was a Muslim with a mental disability she was refused the residence, despite meeting income criteria.
Reem Rahman is graduating CAIR-Chicago, she will be pursuing graduate studies at Oxford. "Throughout her entire tenure with us, Reem has served CAIR-Chicago and our constituents with undying passion and resolve," comments Executive Director, Ahmed Rehab.
Read more HERE.
CAIR-Chicago is Seeking a New COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR
If you are interested in applying for this position, please visit our Career Center.
APPLY TODAY FOR AN INTERNSHIP AT CAIR-CHICAGO
Civil Rights Director
Government Affairs Coordinator
Cultural Sensitivity Speaker
Kevin Vodak, Esq.
Board of Directors
Hina Sodha, Esq.
Yaser Tabbara, Esq. - Secretary
Mazen Kudaimi, MD - Vice President
Safaa Zarzour, Esq. - President