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Tomorrow is Election Day and no matter who wins, increased polarization on both sides may not bode well for Americans of Muslim background, who have been front and center in many of the conversations during this election. With rising Islamophobia and increased hate crimes and bullying, the situation may get worse before it gets better.
New Material on Islamophobia
In light of this situation, we are pleased to provide you with a helpful resource on the topic of Islamophobia and its Impact which you can access free of charge on our site. It includes a digital presentation that you can project and share, along with an accompanying overview, both of which focus on the various sources and impacts of Islamophobia and strategies and resources to counter it.
We have also updated our PowerPoint and answers to frequently asked questions about ISIS. Both resources include detailed citations and references for further reading and research. ING also provides answers to over 100 frequently asked questions, including common questions about terrorism, violence, and other hot topics as well as questions about Sharia in the United States.
We hope that these and the other resources on our website will be useful for you as we work together to combat prejudice, bigotry, and hate.
And don’t forget to vote on Tuesday, November 8, 2016!
Join the #OnNovember9 Campaign
ING joined a coalition of Muslim, interfaith, and civic groups who have issued a nationwide call asking Americans of all faith, racial, and political backgrounds to commit to working with each other to build a more united country – regardless of who gets elected on Tuesday.
The campaign, titled #OnNovember9, asks all Americans to go on social media the day before the election and share the actions they will take to take to reduce the tensions brought about by this divisive election cycle.
Their #OnNovember9 pledges will serve as a reminder to all Americans that we can, and must, work together to rebuild our nation’s unity and #RestoreCivility.
Sample posts include the following:
#OnNovember9 I pledge to visit a local house of worship different from my own and introduce myself as a loving neighbor #RestoreCivility
#OnNovember9 I pledge to invite into my home friends or colleagues that voted differently than I did, and talk about how we move forward
#OnNovember9 I pledge to not use divisive labels or make assumptions about people in social media or community gatherings
#OnNovember9 I pledge to #RestoreCivility by listening w/out judgment & by acknowledging peoples’ feelings of mistrust & injustice
Updated Resources on Bullying Prevention
Over the next few weeks as America reckons with the end of the Presidential election, it is possible that we’ll see a rise in harassment and bullying towards Muslim, Arab, and Sikh students in our schools. These students, like all other American students, deserve a positive and encouraging environment – free from discrimination – where they can achieve their full potential.
In a time like this, all persons of influence must stand together to affirm the United States’ values and laws to combat all forms religious-based hate. Teachers and administrators are especially important in this effort because they are on the front lines, often in positions to witness acts of harassment and bullying and their harmful effects.
The following are several steps teachers and administrators can take to ensure healthy and safe learning environments for Muslim, Arab, and Sikh students:
- Reach out to Muslim, Arab, and Sikh students to let them know you are always there for support if a negative incident occurs
- Be vigilant in regards to any instances of harassment and bullying towards Muslim and Sikh students
- Implement a zero-tolerance policy for harassment and bullying in any form with strictly enforced and clearly enunciated policies
- Acknowledge your own personal views and biases to see if they may compromise any form of neutrality in presenting information
- Promote school-wide programs and activities that encourage tolerance and diversity
- Invite guest speakers to classrooms to address common misconceptions of Muslim and Arab students
- Refer your community to our Student Resources and Parental Resources Cheat Sheets
As always, we welcome your questions and comments regarding these offerings.