The purpose behind the event, was to address and validate the impact of hate and backlash felt by the Muslim community and those perceived to be Muslim. This forum was incredibly relevant - especially during a time when tragic events around the world lead to an increase in levels of hate crimes, and overall increase in micro-aggressions/hate incidents against the Muslim community.
When one of our brothers/sisters is targeted for their religion, he/she may feel vulnerable and might not understand the difference between a hate incident and a hate crime. Some may become the recurring victims of discrimination and aggression without knowing when or how to report to a law enforcement or understand the resources or agencies they can look to for support.
The forum attempted to better position our community by providing a space in which we could discuss the impact of hate crimes/incidents on our community. The agencies present, introduced our community to the relevant stakeholders able to provide assistance. By clarifying and demystifying questions related to hate crimes and other relevant issues, we were successfully able to introduce how communities and stakeholders can stand against hate together.
A special thanks to Salam Al-Marayati, president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) for his support in making this event happens. It was indeed educational and empowering.