CAIR-NJ Welcomes State Senate’s Passing of Muslim Heritage Month Resolution, Calls on Assembly to Follow Suit
(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 2/3/2023) — The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today welcomed the State Senate’s passing of Senate Joint Resolution [SJR105] designating January of each year as “Muslim Heritage Month” in New Jersey and calls on the Assembly to follow suit and pass Assembly Joint Resolution [AJR194].
Earlier this month, CAIR-NJ joined New Jersey community leaders and coalition partners at the Senate Chambers in support of the Senate Joint Resolution. Late last year, CAIR-NJ testified in support of the resolution, calling attention to the state’s growing Muslim population.
The joint resolution was sponsored by Senator Pennacchio (LD-26) and Senator Stack (LD-33) and co-sponsored by Senator Bucco (LD-25), Senator Durr (LD-3), Senator Turner (LD-15), Senator Gopal (LD-11), Senator Greenstein (LD-14), Senator Lagana (LD-38), Senator Pou (LD-35) and Senator Zwicker (LD-16).
It calls upon local government agencies and interested government organizations to observe this month with appropriate ceremonies, activities, and education programs acknowledging, promoting awareness of, and appreciating Muslim Americans and recognizing the contributions of New Jersey Muslims.
New Jersey has the highest percentage of Muslim residents in the U.S., at 3 percent, according to the Pew Research Center. New Jersey also leads the way for local representation, with over 40 elected officials. Last year, the state elected the first ever Muslims to the New Jersey State Legislature, Assemblywomen Sadaf Jaffer (LD-16) and Shama Haidar (LD-37).
Still, however, anti-Muslim incidents are on the rise. CAIR-NJ received over 160 calls for help in 2022 alone. The joint resolution seeks to push back against anti-Muslim bigotry by celebrating American Muslims.
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 State Legislature recognize and acknowledge that diverse and vibrant community.
“We are excited to see the resolution move through the Senate, and we are optimistic that the State Assembly will do the same. We are hopeful that New Jersey will soon recognize January as a month dedicated to celebrating Muslims.
“In tandem with our coalition partners and community members, we call upon 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 August last year, Senator Cory Booker submitted a resolution to recognize Muslim American heritage month.
American Muslims for Democracy
American Muslims for Palestine-New Jersey
Black Lives Matter – Paterson
Bergen County Islamic Education Center
Center for Islamic Life at Rutgers University
Center for Security, Race and Rights
Council of Imams in New Jersey
Faith in New Jersey
ICNA Council for Social Justice
Indian American Muslim Council
Islamic Center of Morris County
Islamic Society of Basking Ridge, Inc.
Jews for Palestinian Right of Return
League of Women Voters of New Jersey
Make the Road New Jersey
Masjid As’Habul Yameen Inc
Masjid Muhammad – Newark
Masjid Ul Wadud of Montclair
Muslims 4 Peace
Muslim League of Voters of New Jersey
New Jersey Alliance For Immigrant Justice
New Jersey Consortium for Immigrant Children
Newark Communities for Accountable Policing
New Jersey Institute for Social Justice
New Jersey Muslim Lawyers Association
New Jersey Muslim Voice for Progress
New Jersey Sisterhood
North NJ Democratic Socialist of American BDS and Palestine Solidarity Working Group
Northern NJ Jewish Voice for Peace
Palestinian American Community Center
Salvation and Social Justice
Teaching While Muslim
Wind of the Spirit Immigrant Resource Center
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, email@example.com, 551-221-5592