Monteiro Urges Community to “Get Engaged at the Grassroots Level”
In a meeting with top leaders of the Pakistani American community on December 5, Mr. Monteiro, urged the Pakistanis to “get engaged at the grassroots level.” Mr. M onteiro lauded COPAA’s role in bridge-building and encouraged the community to think of how their presence can be maintained in the long-term. Speaking to the youth leaders from the various UC Pakistani Student Associations, Mr.Monteiro encouraged students to consider careers within the government, ranging from internships to full-time opportunities, “that will insure your voice and presence in government and policy matters,” he said.
After elucidating President Obama’s and his administration’s outreach efforts to the Muslim community, Mr. Monteiro answered questions and addressed concerns put forth by the leaders that were present.
Some of the issues discussed were:
1.Establishment of a zakat fund for Muslims
2. Visa refusals of Pakistanis
3.Customs and borders checking and profiling
4.Radicalization of Muslim youth
5.Clearance list of Muslim charities
Mr. Monteiro expressed appreciation to the audience for being polite and for bringing forward the issues affecting the community. He suggested organizing a meeting with COPAA leaders and the National Security Council in the coming weeks. “Such dialogues and discussions will help bring the real issues to light,” he said. Leaders present at the meeting: COPAA Board, students from local universities, LAPD and various community leaders.
Pictures at right were taken on the occasion.