June 2017

Just like this summer, Poligon is heating up!

Salaam, and welcome to our June newsletter! See below for what we were up to this month as well as our upcoming events:

Ramadan Fundraiser
Alhamdulillah, we raised over $30,000 through our crowd funding campaign on LaunchGood and Facebook, private fundraisers, and through our website. Thanks to all those who donated! We’ll continue our push to raise $150,000 for year 1 expenses. As a reminder, you can donate year-round here.

#WearOrange

Poligon partnered with Everytown for Gun Safety to help turn America orange to help raise awareness of gun violence. This issue is relevant more than ever as 93 Americans are killed and hundreds injured by gun violence every day.

Poligon meets with Congressional offices on H. Res 257: Condemning Hate Crimes

Poligon has partnered with MPAC and Emgage USA to ask members of Congress to sign H. Res 257, a resolution asking law enforcement, federal agencies, and the executive branch to bring perpetrators of hate crimes to justice and enhance security measures for institutions, including places of worship. Following our visit to her office, Rep. Moore (D-WI) officially became a co-sponsor.

 

Coalition to #CounterACT Hate
Poligon joined a coalition of 129 national and local organizations who sent letters to 29 mayors in advance of anti-Muslim marches scheduled in their cities by ACT for America, a hate group according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. The letters called on the mayors to embrace “values of pluralism, diversity, and liberty for all while firmly rejecting the forces of hate and bigotry that seek to divide us.

 

Fasting 5K in D.C.
Muslims from around the Washington DC area gathered together to run a 5k whilst fasting in order to raise funds for Poligon to create and deliver Congressional Advocacy workshops for youth on engagement around issues. We will begin scheduling those workshops in the coming months.

 

Poligon attends problematic violent extremism hearing with witnesses Asra Nomani and Ayaan Hirsi Ali
The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing included witnesses who have called for Islam’s reform was deliberately framed around Muslim extremism —completely ignoring violent acts committed by non-Muslim and right-wing extremist factions.​

Hill Briefing regarding the rise of Hate Groups & Hate Crimes:
Poligon attended a congressional briefing on the rise of hate groups and crimes. The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) found that 867 incidents of hate occurred in the first 10 days following the November election, including more than 300 where the target was Muslim or an immigrant.

Islamic Relief’s 7th Annual Capitol Hill Eid Luncheon:
We attended the Islamic Relief USA’s 7th Annual Capitol Hill Eid Luncheon on the Hill. Speakers at the event, including Representatives Keith Ellison(D-MN-5)Danny K. Davis (D-IL-7), and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA-40), expressed their support for Muslim communities during this tense political climate.​

Justice for Nabra DC vigil
Following the horrendous murder of Nabra Hassanen, we attended the DC vigil to pay our respects to a young Muslim woman who was the victim of a brutal murder during Ramadan. It was also a time to reflect on the fear many feel from Islamophobia across the country today

Poligon in the News:

Dozens of groups urging mayors nationwide to disavow anti-Muslim marches (News 8)

After killing of Muslim girl near mosque, talk of risks, rights and hijab (The Washington Post)

Weekly Hill Happenings:
We’ve been keeping you up-to-date on the latest on Capitol Hill with our Hill Happenings going straight to your inboxes every Friday.

Hill Happenings – June 16, 2017
: Bills to prevent those who are convicted of a hate crime from obtaining firearms, Senate bill to automatically register eligible voters, extending Fair Housing Act to curb discrimination against LGBTQ community, Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, 9th Circuit ruling against Travel Ban

Hill Happenings – June 24, 2017
Outline of AHCA is revealed to senators, Verify First Act passed the House, House bill gives lawmakers the right to carry firearms for protection, bipartisan legislation introduced to enable millions of Americans to purchase homes, Voting Rights Advancement Act aims to restore protections for voters, Criminalization of Immigrants and Sanctuary Cities introduced.  
Hill Happenings – June 30, 2017: Kate’s Law, Sarah’s Law, bipartisan legislation to curb cradle to prison pipeline, Muslim Ban 3.

Upcoming Events:

Congressional advocacy training in the DC area with Young Leaders Institute

Want a training in your area? Email us: info@poligonnational.org

Don’t forget to visit our website to view our policy briefs and the latest updates. Like our Facebook page, and follow us on Instagram and Twitter to stay up-to-date on news affecting American Muslims and our allies on Capitol Hill. Feel free to forward this newsletter to others.
Stay active,
Afif, Nadia, and Wardah

POLIGON STATEMENT ON SUPREME COURT’S PARTIAL REINSTATEMENT OF REVISED MUSLIM TRAVEL BAN

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 26th 2017POLIGON STATEMENT ON SUPREME COURT’S PARTIAL REINSTATEMENT OF REVISED MUSLIM TRAVEL BAN
Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund is extremely concerned and disappointed with the U.S. Supreme Court’s announcement to allow some provisions of the Trump administration’s revised executive order barring Muslim and refugee travel to go into effect before hearing arguments later this Fall.

Board Member Nadia Mozaffar summarized the ruling: “although both the Ninth and Fourth Circuit Courts of Appeal found that the Muslim ban unconstitutionally discriminated against refugees and immigrants due to their religion, the reinstated ban (1) allows the administration to suspend refugee resettlement for four months (2) bans immigrants and travelers from six Muslim-majority countries from the United States for three months, if such immigrants and refugees cannot demonstrate they have a relationship with a person or an organization in the United States.”

Allowing the executive orders to take effect, even in limited form, unjustly ignores the Islamophobic origins of the policy and could encourage additional anti-Muslim policies from the Trump administration. It also puts Muslim Americans in jeopardy of being the victims of anti-Muslim hate crimes, which are already at an alarmingly high level. Furthermore, the announcement will cause unnecessary hardship and administrative headaches for individuals from the six Muslim-majority countries.

Congress must fulfill its oversight duties and step in to condemn and nullify this bigoted ban. As lower courts have previously stated, this policy is based on discrimination against the Muslim community’s religion, and not national security. It also clearly undermines our values as a nation to welcome people of all backgrounds, regardless of their religion or ethnic background.

We will continue to stand against this ban and are confident that when the Supreme Court does hear the case in the Fall, it will strike it down and put an end to this bigoted policy once and for all.

Poligon Education Fund is a non profit, non-partisan organization providing research and education on issues of concern to Muslim Americans and their allies. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.​​


Contact: Nadia Mozaffar | info@poligonnational.org###

DC MUSLIMS COUNTER ANTI-ISLAM PROTESTS WITH FASTING 5K CHARITY RUN ON SATURDAY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
​June 10, 2017
DC MUSLIMS COUNTER ANTI-ISLAM PROTESTS WITH FASTING 5K CHARITY RUN ON SATURDAY
70% of proceeds will be distributed to Poligon Education Fund to train Muslim youth on Congressional engagement
Washington, D.C. – On Saturday, June 10, the same day that “March Against Shariah” will be held across the country by ACT for America, D.C. Muslims will be running and walking at the end of a 17 hour long fast to empower their community members against such hate. About 70 people are expected to participate in the annual 5k. A majority of the proceeds will benefit Poligon Education Fund (Poligon), a non-profit, non-partisan organization launched in January to amplify the Muslim American voice in Congress.
Ramadan is a holy month celebrated annually by the Islamic faith, in which healthy Muslims will forgo food and water during the day and instead opt to use their time for spiritual reflection, charity, and general acts of goodness. Fasting5k utilizes this spirit in creating a network of communities that walk for the cause of charitable giving. Since its inception in 2013, Fasting 5k has raised a whopping $225,000 for local charities. This year, this influence spans Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Columbus, Detroit, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco Bay area, Toronto and Washington D.C. The Toronto event was recognized by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday. 
Given the tense political climate, supporting causes that strengthen community through civic engagement is more important than ever. Poligon will utilize the funds to deliver youth-specific Congressional advocacy workshops to engage their representatives on issues such as bullying and Islamophobia they face on a daily basis. In addition, Fasting5k will donate a portion of their earnings from each city to the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) to support young women in their development into active citizens and community leaders.
Details: The event begins at 6:30 PM on Saturday, June 10th at the National Mall on 3rd St NW & Madison Dr NW National Mall, Washington, DC 20216

Contact for Fasting 5K: Farhaan Razi | Farhaanr@gmail.com | 617.922.8263
Contact for Poligon Education Fund: info@poligonnational.org | 713.587.6342
###