CAIR-NJ Leads Coalition Urging NJ State Assembly to Pass Muslim Heritage Month Resolution

(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 3/1/2023) — The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) and more than 70 organizations and religious institutions, known as the “Muslim Heritage Month Coalition,” today urged the New Jersey State Assembly to pass the Assembly Joint Resolution AJR194, which designates January of each year as Muslim Heritage Month in New Jersey.

The coalition today wrote to Assembly State and Local Government committee members: Chair Assemblyman Verrelli (LD-15), Vice-Chair Assemblywoman Swain (LD-38), Assemblywoman Jaffer (LD-16), Assemblyman Simsonsen (LD-1), and Assemblyman Thomson (LD-30) urging them to hold a public hearing on Assembly Joint Resolution AJR194.

They also wrote to Assembly Speaker Coughlin (LD-19) urging him to facilitate passing the joint resolution on the Assembly side, so Governor Murphy can sign it into law, making New Jersey one of a few pioneering states committed to the celebration and recognition of American Muslims.

Earlier this month, the resolution advanced through the Senate but remains in the Assembly.

SEE:Pennacchio Bill to Establish Muslim Heritage Month in NJ Advances 

SEE: CAIR-NJ Welcomes State Senate’s Passing of Muslim Heritage Month Resolution, Calls on Assembly to Follow Suit

In a statement, CAIR-NJ Government Affairs Manager Madina P. Ouedraogo, MPA-PNP said:

“Given the growing population of Muslims in New Jersey, it is only appropriate that the New Jersey State Legislature recognize and acknowledge the diverse and vibrant Muslim community.  

While we celebrate the State Senate’s passing of Senate Joint Resolution [SJR105], in tandem with our coalition partners and community members, we are calling on the Assembly State and Local Government Committee to hold a public hearing on the Assembly Joint Resolution [AJR194] and release it from the Assembly Committee so that it may move to an Assembly voting session and pass.” 

In a statement, Council of Imams in New Jersey Convener Imam Wahy-ud Deen Shareef said:      

“The history of Islam and the growing Muslim Community in New Jersey is rich in the lessons of how the human spirit struggles against social, political, and economic adversity to successfully establish a model life working to serve G_d and bring forward a model human society.  

The late Muslim American Leader, Imam W. Deen Mohammed, encouraged Muslims to establish the best spiritual and social life possible reflecting the high morals and ethics taught by the Qur’an, G_d’s Word, and exhibit in practice the model traditional life of Muhammad the Prophet (prayers and Peace be upon him). This month acknowledges and celebrates these honorable objectives for Muslims and all citizens of New Jersey.”

In a statement, NJ Muslim Organizer Jessica Berrocal said:   

“We ask elected officials to make history with Resolution AJR 194 in order to show the tapestry of New Jersey. 

The resolution began four years ago, when I met with Assembly Angela Mcknight and Annette Chaparro to advocate for our children’s acceptance in public schools and to raise awareness of Muslim children’s religious identities.”

The coalition letter sent to state legislators states, in part:

“From restrictions placed on Muslims to practice their faith, to profiling, bullying, bias incidents, hate crimes, and discrimination stemming from a lack of understanding of Islam, the need for a Muslim Heritage Month is crucial.

“The resolution to designate January as Muslim Heritage Month will play a critical role in public education and help discuss and celebrate American Muslims in culturally competent ways. By extension, this can help push back against anti-Muslim bigotry.”

SEE: Letter to Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin

SEE: Letter to Assembly State and Local Government Committee

Coalition Partners:


Alchemy Consulting LLC

AlGhazaly School Inc – Jersey City

American Muslims for Palestine – New Jersey

Bakka Corp – Jersey City

Bergen County Islamic Education Center

Black Lives Matter Paterson

Center for Islamic Life at Rutgers University

Center for Security, Race and Rights

Council of Imams in New Jersey

Darul Islah Masjid of Teaneck

Eid Committee

Fair Share Housing Center

Faith in New Jersey

Green Muslims of New Jersey


Indian American Muslim Council

Indonesian Muslim Society in America

Islamic Center of Ewing

Islamic Council of Greater Trenton

Islamic Center of Jersey City

Islamic Center of Morris County

Islamic Center of Passaic County

Islamic Center of Union County

Islamic Circle of North America

ICNA Council for Social Justice – New Jersey

Islamic Community Cultural Center

Islamic Society of Basking Ridge

Islamic Society of Central Jersey

Jam E Masjid of Boonton

League of Women Voters of New Jersey

Make the Road New Jersey

Masjid Al-Iman of Jersey City

Masjid As’Habul Yameen Inc

Masjidullah, Inc.

Masjid Muhammad – Newark

Masjid Shuhada

Masjid Ul Wadud of Montclair

Moroccan American Recreational and Organizational Council

Muslim Center of Middlesex County

Muslim Center of Somerset County

Muslim Community of New Jersey

Muslim Foundation Inc

Muslim League of Voters of New Jersey

NAACP New Jersey State Conference

National Domestic Workers Alliance – New Jersey

New Afrika Halal Group

New Brunswick Islamic Center

Newark Communities for Accountable Policing

New Freedom Works, Inc

New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice

New Jersey Citizen Action

New Jersey Institute for Social Justice

New Jersey Muslim Lawyers Association

New Jersey League of Conservation Voters

New Jersey Muslim Officers Society

New Jersey Policy Perspective

New Jersey Working Families Party

NIA Masjid & Community Center

NJ Sisterhood

North Hudson Islamic Center

Northern New Jersey Jewish Voice for Peace

North New Jersey Muslim Federation

Occupy Bergen County

Palestinian American Community Center

Salvation and Social Justice

Sikh Coalition

Shia Assocation of North America

Sheefa Pharmacy

Teaching While Muslim

United We Serve


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


CONTACT:CAIR-NJ Communications Manager Dina Sayedahmed,, 551-221-5592