March 21, 2009 – April 2, 2009
• A Muslim man and his friends were eating at a franchise restaurant for which he works for at another location. After requesting to speak to the manager about the quality of their order, the manager stated, “go ride a camel back to where you’re from,” and continued to shout obscenities that drove the man and his friends out of the restaurant; the manager locked the doors behind them to ensure they could not reenter the restaurant. The man was also denied the franchise’s corporate number to file a complaint. CAIR-Chicago has advised him to file a complaint with the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) for denial of public accommodation and will represent him in the matter.
• A Muslim man was attacked and badly beaten by a group of more than a dozen men after defending his wife outside their parked vehicle; a traumatic experience to which their two year old son had witnessed. The Chicago Police Department has filed this case as a hate crime and are pursuing several suspects. CAIR-Chicago is closely following this case as it progresses to ensure that standard procedure is followed by all parties involved.
• A Muslim man has been contacted by the FBI via telephone and home visits inquiring about his work with his community. CAIR-Chicago represented the man in communications with the FBI.
• A Muslim man was arrested and detained by the FBI for fourteen hours at which point was released without charges; the only explanation given to him was that it was a case of mistaken identity. The FBI has visited the man on some occasions asking questions pertaining to national security. CAIR-Chicago’s staff attorney contacted the FBI agent involved and will represent him in future communications with the FBI.
• A Muslim family, U.S. citizens of Palestinian origin, was denied entry into Israel while trying to get to Ramallah to visit an ill family member. They were detained in police immigration, deprived of food and water, and denied medical treatment; the women in the family was pregnant and experienced cramping and bleeding while her 18 month old baby was running a high fever. They were ultimately deported into Jordan where they were again denied entry. CAIR-Chicago is currently involved with this case and is attempting to seek some form of justice for the family.
• Four Muslims contacted CAIR-Chicago regarding delays in obtaining citizenship. The individuals applied for citizenship and completed all the necessary requirements. CAIR-Chicago is incorporating these cases into its Citizenship Delay Project.
• A Muslim woman working as a CNA for a nursing home was facing mistreatment by her supervisor after learning that she was pregnant. The woman was instructed by her doctor not to lift anything over 30 pounds and when she briefed her employer of the doctor’s note, the employer’s response was that, “pregnancy is no excuse not to do your job,” and that she can either do her job or she can quit. At this time she had advised CAIR-Chicago that she will continue her work according to her doctor’s note and that she will be in contact with CAIR-Chicago if she encounters problems.
• A Muslim woman living in an apartment complex complained of harassment by the building manager. Among other incidents, the woman has been forbidden from displaying any form of religious ornamentation on the outside of her door. To cover up the discrimination, management has enlisted a new policy which forbids all tenants from displaying any objects on their doors. CAIR-Chicago is currently working to mediate the problem.
• A Muslim boy is facing expulsion from his school after continual altercations between him and other students stemming from the students’ harassment of the boy. The school has suspended the boy numerous times while the other boys have received little or no disciplinary action. The boy transferred to this school recently and had been a model student at his prior school. CAIR-Chicago is representing the boy and his family regarding the discrimination the boy is facing by both his peers and the school.
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Civil Rights Director
Government Affairs Coordinator
Cultural Sensitivity Speaker
Kevin Vodak, Esq.
Board of Directors
Hina Sodha, Esq.
Yaser Tabbara, Esq. - Secretary
Mazen Kudaimi, MD - Vice President
Safaa Zarzour, Esq. - President