Help Muslim, Arab, and South Asian Americans and Refugees TODAY
Contact Elected Officials
- Call your Member of Congress or Senator this week and ask them how they plan to counter this Executive Order. Find out who your Member of Congress is here.
- Only a handful of Republicans have opposed the Executive Order. Ask Republicans to publicly oppose the Muslim Ban, and ask Democratic Senators whether they will withhold consent.
- When talking to your Member of Congress, stress that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stated clear as day on Sunday, January 29, that, “we do not have religious tests in this country.”
- Starting February 20th, Members of Congress will be on recess and back in their districts. Find out when your Member of Congress's next Town Hall meeting will be. Attend with a question prepared: “How are you opposing the Muslim ban?” or “How will you protect CAIR and other Muslim, Arab, and South Asian organizations?” Tell your Member of Congress that your vote depends upon their ability to stand up for equal rights.
- There's been an awesome effort to pass resolutions in solidarity with Muslim, Arab, and South Asian Americans. Ask your local state senator, city council member, or mayor to introduce a resolution in opposition to anti-Muslim bigotry.
Empower Your Own Community
- Host a "Postcard Party" or a "Letter to the Editor" party in your home. Spend the evening writing postcards to Members of Congress and responding to the news of the day with short Letters to the Editor.
- Host a "Solidarity Party" in support of a Muslim, Arab, or South Asian organization. Pick an organization to support from the list at the bottom of the page and raise money for that group. Encourage your friends to sign up for that organization's email list while they're at the party. Two Muslim organizations that are most likely to come under attack over the next year are also two of the two largest Muslim organizations – the Center for American Islamic Relations and the Islamic Society of North America. There are also dozens of organizations working to empower Muslim, Arab, South Asian, and refugee communities that desperately need your support.
- Use your money for good. Support companies that have come out against the Executive Order, like Starbucks, Airbnb, and Lyft. Hold companies accountable who have not come out against the Executive Order or, worse, have been working with the Trump administration to enact these policies. Sign petitions, like this one at Credo, that call on technology companies to refuse to share data with the Trump administration.
- If you attend a protest, make sure you ask any press to interview Muslim, Arab, or South Asian community leaders. Empower their voices!
- If you are part of a religious organization or a church, ask your religious leadership what they will be doing to support Muslim, Arab, and South Asian communities in your area. Ask them to join Shoulder to Shoulder, T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights, or the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, and ask them whether they are planning any sermons about the virtues of helping our fellow neighbors.
- If you are part of a university, ask your university leadership how they will show support for Muslim, Arab, South Asian, and international students. Tell them to oppose the Executive Order, improve safety on campus to prevent hate crimes against affected communities, and book Muslim, Arab, South Asian, black, or refugee speakers this semester.
- If you are part of a large corporation, tell your company leadership to protect at risk employees and at risk clientele. Everyone should be free to work knowing that their employers will fight for them. Tell your company to refuse to cooperate with the Trump administration. If your tech company collects data on its clientele, like Amazon, tell them to refuse to hand that data over to the Trump administration. Encourage your company to include Muslim, Arab, and South Asian spokespeople in their advertising campaigns, like many corporations did in 2016.
- If you are a teacher, dedicate part of your curriculum over the next month to the Japanese internment camps and the larger lessons of our nation's history. The 75th anniversary of the internment camps will be on February 19. Teach our nation's values of freedom of religion. We don't tell people how to pray and we don't judge people based on the color of their skin or what country they come from. Also reach out to the Islamic Networks Group to invite a Muslim speaker to your school as a guest speaker.
- If you see a hate crime in action, or aggression towards a Muslim, Arab, or South Asian individual, step up to the plate. Take video if needed. Visit ACLU for more information about what you can or cannot record in public.
- Attend a Green Dot training or another violence prevention training that will transform you from bystander to an empowered voice for justice.
Donate or volunteer with the International Rescue Committee or another organization working to support refugees. You can volunteer, donate, spread the word, and take action to support the men, women, and children trying to enter the United States and pursue the American dream.
Learn and Listen
What are the differences between Muslim, Arab, and South Asian Americans?
- The United States is home to 3.3 million Muslim Americans. There are nearly 1.7 billion Muslims across the world. Muslim Americans have been inside the United States since our founding, and nearly a third of all slaves brought to the United States were Muslim.
- Not all Muslim Americans are South Asian or Middle Eastern. One third are black and the Latino community is the fastest growing group of Muslim Americans in the United States.
- There are more Christian Arab Americans in the United States than Muslim Americans - just because someone is Middle Eastern doesn't mean they are Muslim and visa versa. Ultimately, a huge number of people are impacted by the Muslim Ban and other policies, whether they are Muslim, Middle Eastern, South Asian, Sikh, Black, immigrant or nonimmigrant.
- A hijab, headscarf, or kufi is not a good indicator of how religious a person may be. Some very religious individuals choose not to wear a headscarf.
- Some relatively secular people wear the headscarf. A hijab is NOT indicative that someone is oppressed or needs to be saved. If anything, they are standing up for their community at a time when a headscarf singles them out as a potential victim of hate crimes – and that’s a pretty powerful and empowered act. Either way, please don't wear a headscarf out of solidarity. Instead, make sure that others have the right to wear it or not wear it as they see fit.
- The Muslim American community shares powerful and diverse beliefs. Find out more about the Muslim American community on the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding’s website.
What is going on in the world right now?
- There are a bunch of different policies being introduced that would restrict religious freedom and make the United States more dangerous for Muslim, Arab, and South Asian Americans. Here is the latest on what the Executive Order requires, according to the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.
- There are new pieces of legislation that will make it harder to donate money to Muslim organizations inside the United States. This is not what we stand for as Americans. We will not stand by during another witch-hunt or another “Red Scare”. Support Muslim, Arab, and South Asian organizations inside the United States by donating and joining their email lists.
Muslim, Arab and South Asian groups to support
- Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee: a civil rights organization committed to defending the rights of people of Arab descent and promoting their rich cultural heritage.
- Arab American Institute: They've already started launching resources for reporting discrimination, and materials to educate lawmakers, community members and allies on the dangers of unconstitutional and undemocratic policies that were proposed during the campaign.
- Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services: The largest Arab American human services nonprofit in the United States. With eight locations and more than 100 programs serving metro Detroit, ACCESS offers a wide range of social, economic, health and educational services to a diverse population.
- Asian Law Caucus/Asian Americans Advancing Justice: Fighting for civil rights and empowering Asian Americans to create a more just America for all.
- Center for American Islamic Relations (and/or your local CAIR chapter): CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties organization, with regional offices nationwide.
- Desis Rising Up And Moving: A multigenerational, membership led organization of low-wage South Asian immigrant workers and youth in New York City.
- Emerge USA: A 501c(4) that seeks to engage, educate and empower Muslim, South Asian and Arab American (MASA) communities through educational events, voter initiatives, and leadership development for the purpose of creating a community of equitable, knowledgeable and motivated citizens. (They also have a c3 for those sweet, sweet tax deductible donations)
- Inner City Muslim Action Network: IMAN is a Chicago-based community organization that fosters health, wellness and healing in the inner-city by organizing for social change, cultivating the arts and operating a holistic health center.
- Islamic Networks Group: Works through regional volunteers and affiliated organizations across the country who provide thousands of presentations, training seminars and workshops, and panel discussions annually in schools, colleges and universities, law enforcement agencies, corporations, healthcare facilities, and community organizations as part of cultural diversity curricula and programs. (And so much more...)
- Islamic Relief USA: Islamic Relief USA is a humanitarian organization and a member of Islamic Relief Worldwide. In addition to international relief and development initiatives, Islamic Relief USA also sponsors and funds domestic projects ranging from emergency disaster responses to assisting the American homeless population and supporting those who cannot afford basic healthcare.
- Institute for Social Policy and Understanding: ISPU conducts objective, solution-seeking research that empowers American Muslims to further community development and fully contribute to democracy.
- KARAMAH: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights is a nonprofit organization committed to promoting human rights globally, especially gender equity, religious freedom and civil rights in the United States. It pursues its mission through education, legal outreach and advocacy.
- MPower Change: A grassroots movement rooted in diverse Muslim communities throughout the United States who are working together to build social, spiritual, racial, and economic justice for all people.
- Muslim Advocates: A national legal advocacy and educational organization that works on the frontlines of civil rights to guarantee freedom and justice for Americans of all faiths.
- The Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative: A faith-based human rights education organization focusing on racial justice.
- South Asian Americans Leading Together: SAALT connects with elected officials, media, and government agencies to highlight issues that affect South Asians. Their work has included regular briefings and meetings with the White House, Department of Justice, and Department of Homeland Security, as well as Advocacy Days that bring advocates and community members closer to decision-makers.
- Sikh Coalition: Safeguarding the civil and human rights of all citizens as well as promoting the Sikh identity.