MPAC Counters Islamophobia within Law Enforcement

Los Angeles, CA: Last week, the Muslim Public Affairs Council along with the Muslim American Homeland Security Congress (MAHSC) and the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department’s Muslim Community Affairs Unit hosted a conference to help law enforcement officials better serve their Muslim communities and debunk misconceptions about their faith.
The audience of more than 150 included command staff from police departments in Los Angeles, Orange County, Long Beach and San Diego and officials from the Department of Homeland Security, the National Counterterrorism Center and the Los Angeles City Human Relations Commission.
MAHSC members who helped organize and participate in the conference included Iranian American Muslim Association of North America , Council on American Islamic Relations - Greater Los Angeles , Council of Pakistan American Affairs , Omar Ibn Al Khattab Foundation , Bilal Islamic Center , Islamic Center of San Gabriel Valley , Islamic Center of Southern California and the Islamic Society of Orange County .
Salam Al-Marayati , the President of MPAC, discussed the current work being done by the Muslim community and law enforcement to counter violent extremism.
“The partnership model is the best means of countering violent extremism because the information is more credible than the surveillance model, where the information gathered is inaccurate and will not work,” he said.
Al-Marayati also stressed that countering violent extremism is a division of labor between law enforcement and the Muslim American community, citing MPAC’s “Post-9/11 Terrorism Database,” which found that one out of three homegrown al-Qaeda plots have been prevented with the help of the American Muslim community.
SEE: “Building Bridges to Strengthen America” ( mpac.org )
Dr. Maher Hathout , Senior Adviser of MPAC, dispelled myths regarding shariah and women in Islam. When asked about where law enforcement's job ends and the Muslim community’s job begins, in regards to issues such as if a woman should cover her hair, Dr. Hathout stressed “this is an internal conversation that needs to happen within the Muslim community.”
Founded in 1988, MPAC is an American institution which informs and shapes public opinion and policy by serving as a trusted resource to decision makers in government, media and policy institutions. MPAC is also committed to developing leaders with the purpose of enhancing the political and civic participation of Muslim Americans.

 

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Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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