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CAIR New Jersey’s mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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For over fourteen years, CAIR has fought to ensure that Muslims in America are protected in their homes, schools, mosques, and countless other private and public spaces by using the power of the law to give voice to those most impacted by civil rights issues.

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CAIR opposes domestic policies that limit civil rights, permit racial, ethnic or religious profiling, infringe on due process, or that prevent Muslims and others from participating fully in American civic life.

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Numerous Muslim scholars have confirmed that Zakat is payable to organizations that exist to serve the Muslim community by protecting their rights. This is because the work done by CAIR (and other such organizations) can be classified as fi-sabilillah, which is one of the eight categories of Zakat recipients detailed in the Quran (Chapter 9, Verse 60).

Zakat Eligible

Numerous Muslim scholars have confirmed that Zakat is payable to organizations that exist to serve the Muslim community by protecting their rights. This is because the work done by CAIR (and other such organizations) can be classified as fi-sabilillah, which is one of the eight categories of Zakat recipients detailed in the Quran (Chapter 9, Verse 60).

Zakat Eligible

Numerous Muslim scholars have confirmed that Zakat is payable to organizations that exist to serve the Muslim community by protecting their rights. This is because the work done by CAIR (and other such organizations) can be classified as fi-sabilillah, which is one of the eight categories of Zakat recipients detailed in the Quran (Chapter 9, Verse 60).

from our blog.

LATEST NEWS

CAIR-NJ Condemns Alleged Bias-Motivated Attack Targeting Paterson Mosque

CAIR-NJ Condemns Alleged Bias-Motivated Attack Targeting Paterson Mosque

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today condemned an alleged bias-motivated attack targeting congregants at the Islamic Congregation of North Jersey, also known as Masjid Abu Bakr, in Paterson, N.J.

Worshippers were reportedly pelted with rocks while praying on Monday evening, making this the second alleged bias attack in eight months, according to mosque leaders and authorities.

At around 8:25 p.m., three young men came in through the front door while around 100 people were gathered for sunset prayer, said Burhan Uddin, a board member at the mosque. One held the door while the others threw rocks, he said. Two people were struck on the leg, but no one was injured, Uddin added.

The Passaic County Sheriff’s Office responded and has referred the matter to the county Prosecutor’s Office, which investigates bias crimes.

SEE: ‘We lock the door’: Paterson mosque-goers fearful after second bias attack

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said:

“Houses of worship are intended to be places of spiritual refuge. Disturbing incidents like these rob them and their congregants of the tranquility that they are seeking.

“Unfortunately, we’re seeing a trend of New Jersey mosques installing bullet-proof windows and, as we’re seeing with Masjid Abu Bakr now, locking their doors during prayer. This is not conducive to our growth or development as a community.

“We continue to call on local officials to support community-based organizations as they seek to protect themselves through the hiring of private security.”

He urged mosques and other houses of worship and faith-based and advocacy organizations to take extra security precautions as outlined in its “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety” booklet.

The booklet may be viewed at: https://www.cair.com/mosque-and-community-safety/

Maksut also noted that this incident is not isolated, with CAIR-NJ documenting nearly 100 cases of alleged biases so far this year.

CAIR released a report earlier this year on structural Islamophobia, titled, “Still Suspect: The Impact of Structural Islamophobia,” detailing more than 6,700 civil rights complaints that the group received this year.

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

END

CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut, 908-267-3119, smaksut@cair.com

CAIR-NJ Welcomes Senator Booker’s Resolution to Recognize Muslim-American Heritage Month 

CAIR-NJ Welcomes Senator Booker’s Resolution to Recognize Muslim-American Heritage Month

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 8/02/2022) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today welcomed Senator Cory Booker’s Senate resolution to recognize July 2022 as Muslim-American Heritage Month.  

The resolution recognizes the importance of American Muslim figures, including El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz, Imam Warith Deen Mohamed, Muhammad Ali, Ibtihaj Muhammad. It also notes American Muslims’ contributions to American society as business owners, entrepreneurs, healthcare professionals, humanitarians, scientists, and students. More notably, the resolution also recognizes sustained biases that American Muslims experience and calls for public education, awareness, and policies that are “culturally competent” when discussing the American Muslim community. 

SEE: Resolution Recognizing Muslim American Heritage Month 

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said:  

“Muslim are not new to America — America’s first slaves were Muslim — and, as a community, we have long contributed to American society. We appreciate that this resolution recognizes generations of American Muslims, past and present.   

“We also applaud the resolution’s consideration of biases that American Muslims face. It is important that our legislators do so while also drafting new policy to address this issue head on.  

“New Jersey does have the highest percentage of Muslims in America and it is our hope that Senator Booker will take lead on additional initiatives targeting issues that affect the American Muslim community directly, like protection against surveillance and entrapment, relief for incarcerated Muslims, refuge for Muslims fleeing precarious living conditions in Afghanistan following the hasty U.S. withdrawal, and civil liberty protections for all Americans. 

We look forward to further collaboration between Senator Booker and his Muslim constituents on bills that bring about positive change for the community and our nation.” 

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.  

END 

CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut, 908-267-3119, smaksut@cair.com. 

CAIR-NJ Welcomes New State Law Establishing Licensing Program for All NJ Law Enforcement

CAIR-NJ Welcomes New State Law Establishing Licensing Program for All NJ Law Enforcement

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 07/22/2022) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today welcomed a new state law that would require all NJ law enforcement officers to hold a valid, active license issued by the Police Training Commission in order to be employed as officers in the State of New Jersey.  

New Jersey joins 46 other states across the nation in creating a statewide police licensing program.     

Under the new measure, law enforcement officials will be required to pass a psychological examination and take training courses to remain licensed. They would face decertification for various instances of misconduct, including being convicted of a crime in the U.S., having two or more Driving While Intoxicated offenses, and unprofessional conduct causing public harm.  

SEE: Police in N.J. will be required to get a license under new law signed by Murphy     

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said:  

“Nearly 90 police officers were booted from NJ police forces just last year, and several hundred received disciplinary action. It’s clear that police oversight and accountability are much needed, and a licensing program could be a move in the right direction.     

“We have previously called for increased funding to community-based organizations and mental health programs that can be instrumental in preventing crime and violence altogether, as opposed to increasing funding for law enforcement, and that is still our position.    

“This new law does not erase the fact that racism and white supremacy are deeply entrenched in U.S. law enforcement. Instructional information is often riddled with subtle or even overt racism.  

“We call on local and state governments to be proactive in identifying racist officers and racism within law enforcement, including training programs. This is crucial to the protection of Black Americans and communities of color that these police officers serve.”    

SEE: Prevalence of white supremacists in law enforcement demands drastic change  

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.  

END  

CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut. 908-267-3119, smaksur@cair.com   

 

 

CAIR-NJ Condemns Racist Threats Targeting Black Woman in Md., Welcomes Judge’s Ruling for In-Patient Drug Treatment

CAIR-NJ Condemns Racist Threats Targeting Black Woman in Md., Welcomes Judge’s Ruling for In-Patient Drug Treatment

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 07/20/2022) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today condemned a New Jersey man’s racist epithets and threats targeting a Black woman in Maryland.    

U.S. District Judge Stephanie A. Gallagher sentenced the man, Michael Marotta, 26, of Sewell, NJ, to 30 days of confinement, in-patient drug treatment, and three years of probation.     

SEE: N.J. man sentenced for racist, threatening text sent to Black woman in Maryland   

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said:   

“We are disappointed that someone would send such frightening threats and racist messages. There should be no tolerance for racism of any sort.  

“We are also optimistic about the judge’s decision requiring the perpetrator to check in to an in-patient drug rehabilitation program.” 

Maksut also emphasized the need to center rehabilitation in response to violence, whether actualized or verbal, that can affect long-term change.   

He said CAIR and the American Muslim community stand in solidarity with all those challenging antisemitism, anti-Black racism, xenophobia, Islamophobia, and white supremacy.

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.    

END

CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut, 908-267-3119, smaksut@cair.com 

 

CAIR-NJ Condemns Antisemitic Hate Crime Targeting a Deal Synagogue

CAIR-NJ Condemns Antisemitic Hate Crime Targeting a Deal Synagogue

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 07/19/2022) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned an alleged antisemitic incident targeting aa synagogue in Deal, N.J.  

Nicholas Skirvin, 44, of Denville, allegedly shouted “several terroristic threats that were biased in nature” outside the Orthodox Jewish Ohel Yaacob on Lawrence Avenue, according to Deal police.  

Skirvin was arrested and charged with second-degree bias intimidation, third-degree terroristic threats and harassment. He is currently being held at the Monmouth County Jail pending a detention hearing.    

SEE: Man Charged with Hate Crime After Outbursts at Deal, NJ Synagogue

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said:   

“Everyone — regardless of faith or background — has the right to feel safe in their homes and places of worship, and we condemn this alleged act of antisemitic hate in the strongest terms. 

“We call on local officials to direct funds to community-based organizations that can provide educational resources to the general public and advocate against antisemitism and bigotry in all its forms.”    

He said the American Muslim community and CAIR stand in solidarity with all those challenging anti-Black racism, xenophobia, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, white supremacy, and all other forms of bigotry.      

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.    

END    

CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut, 908-267-3119smaksut@cair.com. 

 

CAIR-NJ Welcomes Letter by Sens. Menendez, Booker to President Biden Calling for Accountability for the Killing of Shireen Abu Akleh  

CAIR-NJ Welcomes Letter by Sens. Menendez, Booker to President Biden Calling for Accountability for the Killing of Shireen Abu Akleh  

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 7/13/2022) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today welcomed Senators Menendez and Booker’s joint letter to President Biden, in which they urged him to press for accountability for the killing of Shireen Abu Akleh during his upcoming visit to the Occupied West Bank.

The senators also called for continued U.S. participation in transparent and timely investigations into any remaining or new evidence and asked for a “senior-level classified briefing on the investigation details, including American involvement… and next steps with the IDF and PA regarding accountability for Ms. Abu Akleh’s death.”

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said:

“While we are disappointed that our senators were slow to act — their letter comes more than two months after Abu Akleh’s killing — we acknowledge the value of it especially as we come closer to President Biden’s trip to the occupied territories.   

“We commend them for pressing President Biden at such a critical moment and hope to receive answers in the coming days regarding next steps toward accountability. We also hope that the senators will press for the protection of Palestinian human rights and their right to a dignified life.”  

CAIR-NJ had previously written to the Senators Menendez and Booker asking for the reasoning behind their absence in Senator Van Hollen’s letter to President Biden. Senator Van Hollen’s letter, which called for a thorough and transparent investigation into Abu Akleh’s killing, was written several weeks ago and signed by more than 20 other senators.

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

END

CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut, 908-267-3119, smaksut@cair.com.

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Recognitions

American Muslims in New Jersey have much to celebrate. For many years the American Muslim community has added to the rich cultural diversity we greatly value in New Jersey. The Council on American-Islamic Relations is an important vehicle for recognizing the accomplishments of New Jersey's Muslims.
Cory Booker
U.S. Senator New Jersey
CAIR is not for that stranger. CAIR is for you. Even as mayor I was stopped and harassed at JFK along with my wife and four children. My phone was confiscated. CAIR was there to stand up for me and retrieve my phone. Supporting CAIR means making sure that they are there for you when you need them in the future.
Mohamed T. Khairullah
Mayor Prospect Park
Since its inception, CAIR's New Jersey Chapter has been committed to advancing its parent organization's mission to provide necessary services to Muslim Americans that have contributed to their personal and professional wellbeing. CAIR-NJ has long been a champion for the interests of its community, striving to protect their civil liberties and offering them numerous educational opportunities.
Chris Christie
Former Governor of New Jersey
As Governor, I commend the leadership and volunteers of CAIR-NJ for their hard work and dedication to advance civil liberties for countless individuals and for their unwavering dedication to endure the wellness of our society.
Phil Murphy
Governor New Jersey
The work of CAIR and its partners ensures that the rights of all Americans remain protected. Now, more than ever, it is our duty to expose and dismantle Islamophobia and to push back against all types of hate.
Bonnie W. Coleman
Member of Congress
I commend your commitment to engage, embrace and value all communities and I am confident that your efforts will bring greater understanding and tryst to our communities. I look forward to continuing to work with you and the Muslim community in mu district in this endeavor.
Frank Pallone Jr.
U.S. Senator New Jersey
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