Pressrelease

Poligon Education Fund On the Senate Filibuster of For the People Act (S.1)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 22, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org

Poligon Education Fund On the Senate Filibuster of For the People Act (S.1)

Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund released the following statement in response to the Senate blocking of For the People Act (S.1) on Tuesday, June 22nd: 
The passage of the For the People Act (H.R.1/S.1) would have reversed the anti-voter laws being upheld across the country, create a national standard of voter accessibility, get big money out of politics, and stop partisan gerrymandering. Despite today’s disappointing development, Poligon Education Fund reaffirms its commitment to democracy reform and support of For the People Act (S.1), to protect access to the ballot box and ensure every American is represented in our government. 

An overwhelming 8 in 10 Americans, across all political spectrum, support the For the People Act and its measures to protect our freedom to vote. Many provisions of the For the People Act have nonpartisan origins and were passed by both Republican and Democratic legislatures.The blocking of S.1 in the Senate today is a great disappointment and a testament to how detached some of our elected representatives in Congress have come from the people they represent. At a time when draconian voter suppression laws continue to attack the people’s right to vote and uphold the rule for the wealthiest few, proactive action on For the People Act in the Senate is the ground for safeguarding voting rights, not the ceiling.

It is important to note that some of the opposition to S.1 are on procedural matters, not substance. We call on our Senators to center the needs of their constituents and stand on the right side of history, as the legislation has always been nonpartisan, comprehensive, and people-centered. A stand against For the People Act is a stand for voter suppression and the disenfranchisement of millions of vulnerable communities. We reaffirm our unwavering support for voting rights and democracy reform and clearly state that procedural obstacles, including the Senate filibuster, should not stand in the way of protecting the freedom to vote for all Americans. 

We call on our Senators to protect and advance the For the People Act in the Senate in a manner that centers the millions of Americans, particularly Black and brown Americans, who will continue to be disenfranchised and silenced. There is a path to pass this sweeping voting rights legislation. It is a matter of urgency and every Senator’s duty to prioritize the passage of S.1. In the eloquently spoken words of Sen. Warnock, we remind our Congress Members: 

“It is a contradiction to say we must protect minority rights in the Senate while refusing to protect minority rights in our society. No Senate rule should overrule the integrity of the democracy itself, and we must find a way to pass voting rights whether we get rid of the filibuster or not.”

###
Poligon Education Fund is a non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through research, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

​Poligon Celebrates the Passage of the NO BAN Act in the House of Representatives

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 21, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org

​Poligon Celebrates the Passage of the NO BAN Act in the House of Representatives

Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund released the following statement applauding the passage of the NO BAN Act (H.R. 1333) in the House of Representatives: 

Poligon celebrates the bipartisan passage of the H.R. 1333, the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants (NO BAN) Act in the House of Representatives today, with a final vote count of 218-208. The legislation would prevent future Muslim bans and limit the President’s authority to suspend and restrict immigrants from entering the U.S. based on national origin or religious background. 

Our fight against the Muslim and African travel bans started in 2017 and continues to be an integral part of our advocacy efforts and policy priorities. While President Biden’s repeal of the Muslim Ban on Day One of his administration was a welcoming step, advancing the NO BAN Act in Congress and signing it into law would not only ensure future President’s cannot ban a marginalized community, but also begin to right the wrongs that have been inflicted on the immigrant community in the past 4 years.

As we uplift today’s win in the House, we look towards advancing the bill in the Senate and moving it to the President’s desk to be signed into law. We call on our community members, impacted families, and allies to join us and our coalition partners in securing the NO BAN Act’s passage. The bill’s advancement stopped in the Senate last year, and we cannot allow this to happen again. Tens of thousands of immigrants separated by the Muslim and African bans and Diversity Visa recipients face an unnecessary and cruel burden of having to re-apply for consideration. Immigrants’ lives continue to be at stake. We must make the NO BAN Act a reality and protect Muslim, African, and all marginalized immigrant communities for generations to come.

### Poligon Education Fund is a national non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through training, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

​Poligon Demands Systemic Change and Transformative Justice After Chauvin Guilty Verdict

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 21, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org

​Poligon Demands Systemic Change and Transformative Justice After Chauvin Guilty Verdict

Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund released the following statement in response to the April 20th conviction, charging former Officer Derek Chauvin with murder: 

Nine minutes, one year, and a few more minutes. This is what the cycle of police violence and lack of accountability looks like in the United States. Derek Chauvin knelt on George Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes before he took Floyd’s life. The system took 330 days to convict Chauvin of a murder the whole world watched, and only a few minutes after the reading of Chauvin’s guilty verdict we learned of another state sanctioned police killing that took the life of 15 year old Ma’Khia Bryant. 

We cannot call the April 20th conviction of Derek Chauvin justice; we call it accountability. Chauvin is only one officer. He is where we start. The whole system must follow for true transformative justice, where George Floyd and Daunte Wright can embrace their daughters and granddaughters. A world where Ma’Khia Bryant and Adam Toledo are not robbed of their childhood. While the jury’s verdict was a historical, surreal moment for many of us, presenting a moment of relief and proof that accountability is possible, it is not lost on us that Chauvin’s conviction does not absolve policing as a whole. It demonstrates that the system, when in danger, will sacrifice one of its own to avoid true accountability and transformation.

We continue to demand justice for Daunte Wright, Adam Toledo, and the many more young black and brown people who should have been with us today. As allies to the Black-led liberation movement, we reaffirm our unwavering solidarity and fight for racial justice. It is time to protect, center, and listen to our Black siblings as they continue to lead us in the fight for transformative justice. In doing so, we stand firm in holding elected officials to the promises made in 2020 and demanding meaningful policies that divest from violence and invest in our communities. We uplift the Movement for Black Lives’ BREATHE Act, a bold piece of legislation recognizing community power and shifting how we envision community-care and safety. 

Our hearts go out to the family of George Floyd and the people who continue to fight in defense of Black and Brown lives. To our Black and Brown siblings who have endured generational and collective trauma, anger, exhaustion and pain as a result of violent policing, we stand by you. We recognize, honor, and hold space for your fight towards collective liberation.

### Poligon Education Fund is a national non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through training, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

Poligon Condemns Boulder and Atlanta Shootings, Demands Gun Control

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 23, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org
Poligon Condemns the Atlanta and Boulder Mass Shootings and Urges Congress to Adopt a Community-Centered Policy Response 
Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund released the following statement in response to the deadly mass shootings in Atlanta, Georgia on March 16th and Boulder, Colorado on March 23rd: 
At a time when our communities are collectively grieving and healing from the deadly anti-Asian violence inflicted on our siblings in Georgia, leaving eight people dead, we find ourselves grieving another heart wrenching loss of ten victims today. We stand in unconditional solidarity with the survivors and families who endure unimaginable pain and call for immediate community centered responses addressing gun violence and race-based hate crimes. We stand firm against all systemic oppression, white supremacy, xenophobia, gender-based violence, and racial and religious discrimination. We demand immediate gun control measures and recognize gun violence as the arm magnifying all forms of hate. Our nation has witnessed seven mass shootings in the past week alone. 
As Congress moves forward to address gun reform, we urge our representatives to look past party divisions and center the victims and survivors in their response. We call on the Senate to pass the Bipartisan Background Check Act and the Enhanced Background Checks Act. All communities deserve to live in safe neighborhoods, without fear and the threat of hate and violence. The Senate Judiciary hearing on gun reform earlier today is a welcome step towards safer communities.
A community centered solution puts people’s safety and lived experiences first. It does not manifest in the form of more militarized and discriminatory law enforcement. We urge our Members of Congress to center the most impacted in their policy responses and invest resources in communities, including but not limited to, mental health services and equitable community services. We reject increased policing, surveillance, and carceral solutions that disproportionately impact Black, Brown, and Indigenous communities.
### Poligon Education Fund is a national non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through research, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

Poligon’s Statement on the Reintroduction of the NO BAN Act in the House of Representatives

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
​February 25, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org
Poligon Commends the Reintroduction of the NO BAN Act in the House of Representatives 

Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund released the following statement regarding the reintroduction of the NO BAN Act in the House of Representatives: 

Poligon Education Fund joins over 100 Muslim and immigrants’ rights organizations in applauding the reintroduction of the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants Act, also known as the NO BAN Act, in the House of Representatives today. Poligon proudly advocated for and endorsed Rep. Judy Chu’s (D-CA-27) introduction of the bill in 2019 and again today in the 117th Congress. The bill is co-sponsored by 137 House Representatives,  championed in the Senate by Senator Chris Coons (D-DE), and is included in President Biden’s U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021. 

The NO BAN Act imposes limitations on the President’s authority to suspend or restrict immigrants from entering the U.S. and prohibits religious discrimination in immigration-related decisions without statutory basis. We urge Congress to pass this historic bill once again and ensure no future administration can bar the entry of individuals to the U.S. based on their religious background and national origin. 

Poligon’s Policy and Advocacy Manager, Johanna Mustafa, issued the following statement:
“The Muslim and African Bans have traumatized our communities for the past four years, separated many families and inflicted unimaginable suffering. Today, we honor the story of Abdullah Hassan, a 2-year old who died in Oakland, away from loved ones. As we continue to advocate for the passage of the NO BAN Act, we hold the stories of Abdullah and the tens of thousands of people who suffered under this cruel policy, and recognize the reintroduction of the NO BAN Act in the 117th Congress as a step forward in the collective fight for justice.” 

Although Poligon celebrated the repeal of the Muslim Ban on the first day of the Biden Administration, we reaffirm our commitment to ensuring meaningful policy change. We demand the passage of the NO BAN Act in Congress to prevent discriminatory laws from targeting our immigrant communities in the future. 

### 

Poligon Education Fund is a national non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through research, education, and advocacy.

Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

Poligon Commends Federal Appeals Court Decision Against Muslim Ban 3.0

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 15, 2018
CONTACT: info@poligonnational.org
Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund welcomes the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision against President Trump’s third Muslim ban. The Court found that despite superficial revisions of previous versions of the travel ban, it “continues to exhibit a primarily religious anti-Muslim objective.”

​The ban prevents immigrants and many visitors from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen – as well as certain Venezuelan government officials and their families – from entering the United States. Six of the eight countries affected are majority-Muslim. Despite being blocked by multiple district courts, the Supreme Court has allowed the ban to remain in effect while lawsuits against it proceed through the judicial process.

“Just as with the ruling against the ban by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in December, this ruling affirms that the ban is unconstitutional and goes against our nation’s values of religious freedom,” said Poligon Acting Executive Director Afif Rahman. “However, families separated by the ban are still waiting for relief from this oppressive policy. Unless Congress acts to block implementation of the ban, we will have to wait until the Supreme Court issues a ruling on whether it is constitutional.”

Poligon Education Fund strongly opposes all iterations of the Muslim ban and continues to encourage members of Congress to do the same.Poligon Education Fund is a non profit, non-partisan organization working to strengthen Muslim American engagement with Congress through education and advocacy on issues of concern to the community and its allies. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

###

Poligon’s Statement on President Joe Biden Rescission of the Muslim Ban

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
​January 20, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org
​Poligon’s Statement on President Joe Biden Rescission of the Muslim Ban

Washington, D.C. – Today, President Joe Biden repealed President Trump’s Muslim and Africa travel bans. 

Poligon’s Policy and Advocacy Manager, Johanna Mustafa, issued the following statement:
“We are relieved to witness the repeal of this ban, which has traumatized the community for the last four years. The Muslim and African bans separated many families and inflicted unimaginable suffering. Today, I am thinking of Abdullah Hassan, a 2-year old who died in Oakland, away from loved ones. As we celebrate today’s victory we honor the stories of Abdullah and the tens of thousands of people who are still waiting to reunite with their families, and recognize this win as a testament to the power we hold. We win when we organize and come together for collective justice.”

Poligon is proud to have played a role in repealing the Muslim and African Ban, and acknowledges the attorneys, advocates, organizers, impacted communities, and allies who were at the frontlines of the movement in the airports and streets. We fought the racist ban since the first executive order in January 2017 and fought harder with every iteration and expansion of the ban. 
Earlier today, the Biden-Harris administration released a fact sheet outlining a number of comprehensive executive actions that include:

  • Addressing the COVID-19 pandemic and providing economic relief and support to working families;
  • Preserving DACA protections;
  • Deferred enforced departure for Liberians; 
  • Termination of border wall construction; and 
  • Reversing the Muslim and African bans;

These priorities are a reflection of the people’s plight and commitment towards advancing justice for all. Vulnerable communities who have experienced family separation, loss, and suffering in the past four years, persevered in the face of injustice and organized for collective liberation. 

We continue to advocate for democracy reform under the For the People Act (H.R.1/ S.1) to ensure a democracy that works for all. We continue to stand firm in protecting the civil liberties of Black, Indigenous, people of color, and our priorities remain rooted in centering impacted communities. We urge the Biden-Harris administration to fulfill its promise to advance racial equity and protect marginalized communities beyond the policies released today, and help us in the fight against anti-Muslim discrimination, hate crimes, racial profiling, surveillance laws, police brutality, and white supremacy, among many other issues impacting our community. The movement for civil liberties, and social, economic, and environmental justice is not over. 

###
Poligon Education Fund is a national non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through research, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

Press Release: Poligon Education Fund ​Condemns White Supremacist Attack On The U.S. Capitol

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 7, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org

​Poligon Condemns White Supremacist Attack on the U.S. Capitol
Washington, D.C. –Poligon Education Fund released the following statement regarding the violent breach of the U.S. Capitol by white supremacist militias in an attempt to disrupt the certification of the 2020 presidential election: 

Poligon Education Fund condemns the violence inflicted by white supremacist militias and supporters of President Trump at the halls of Congress yesterday. A woman was shot and killed, our elected officials and their staff hid in their chambers as they prayed for their lives, and explosives and weapons were found on Capitol grounds. The attack on the Capitol is an attack on our democracy and on the American people. 

The violence we witnessed is an attempt to erase the fact that in the midst of a pandemic, millions of Americans have turned out in record numbers to vote against the last four years of divisive, racist governance. Even when a powerful few have continuously made it difficult for people to exercise their voting rights, marginalized communities spoke truth to power. In the face of intimidation, violence, and loss, voters reaffirmed their rights and echoed their voices in the halls of power. Poligon, alongside coalition partners and allies, has mobilized millions of voters and will not stand down in the face of this insurrection. 

We commend Congress for its steadfastness in completing the vote count and certifying the election results. We demand members of Congress continue to work towards the peaceful transition of the newly elected administration, and ensure an extensive investigation and full accountability of all groups involved in the white supremacist militant attack, including leaders who have repeatedly empowered  this hateful rhetoric. President Trump’s failure to condemn white supremacy and his previous command to “stand back and stand by” did not only fuel an attack on our Capitol, but also paved the way for violence in statehouses all around the nation. 

The striking difference in the law enforcement’s efforts to protect the Capitol against Black Lives Matter defenders in June of 2020 and against white supremacist militias yesterday is a reminder of the deep, systemic violence harming our communities. We honor the victims of white supremacist violence and recognize the militarized, selective, and racist law enforcement practices. When exercising their right to protest, Black Lives Matter activists and indigenous rights defenders were met with police dogs, mace, militarized surveillance, rubber bullets, and water cannons. Not too long ago, black and brown children were tear gassed at peaceful protests. 

Poligon reaffirms its commitment to continue to hold our newly elected Congress and administration to account, to not only tackle the hateful rhetoric that threatens our communities, but also build a nation that keeps its people safe and allows everyone to thrive. This begins with coming together to swear in new leaders elected by the people, for the people.  

###
Poligon Education Fund is a non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through training, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.

Congress Passes $900 COVID Relief Bill, But Poligon’s Work Continues

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 22, 2020
​Contact: media@poligonnational.org

Washington, D.C. – Poligon Education Fund released the following statement on the congressional passage of COVID-19 relief legislation: 

Poligon Education Fund reaffirms its commitment to amplifying the most vulnerable populations and minority groups in the halls of power. After months of tireless advocacy efforts and a long stalemate in Congress, Poligon supports the release of immediate relief, but recognizes the shortcomings of the bipartisan $900 billion COVID-19 relief bill. 

Poligon applauds the following provisions in the package:

  • Additional $300 per week through unemployment insurance and a federal unemployment insurance 
  • $284 billion in loans for businesses 
  • $69 billion in testing and vaccine distribution funds  
  • $82 billion in funding for colleges and schools.
  • $25 billion in rental assistance and a one-month extension of the eviction moratorium
  • $20 billion for hospitals and healthcare providers
  • $13 billion in food assistance
    • Increases SNAP benefits by 15% for 6 months
    • Ensures college students have access to SNAP
    • Additional funding for food banks and senior nutrition programs
    • Emergency funds for school and day care feeding programs

We recognize that the current relief package falls far from providing adequate and just recovery to vulnerable communities. Almost a year later, marginalized populations including black, indigeneous, people of color, and immigrant communities who have been systematically struggling prior to the coronavirus pandemic continue to be the most impacted. The relief package also dismisses adult dependents, some of whom suffer from disabilities. It repairs the cruel exclusion of 3.5 million citizens who reside with families of “mixed immigration statuses,” but once again fails to include millions of undocumented individuals in the economic relief, many of whom serve as frontline workers. 

Poligon’s Policy and Advocacy Manager, Johanna Mustafa, issued the following statement:
“We are a nation of abundance and wealth where struggling families deserve urgent and lasting change. As we move forward with a new Congress in 2021, Poligon will continue to work towards the inclusion of vulnerable communities. While we support the economic relief this package will provide, we recognize that the American people need more help than this bill provides. Poligon urges Congress to pass another round of direct stimulus checks to help families who have been struggling for months. Our tax dollars must be invested in our communities and center the domestic human needs and rights of our people.”

Press Release: Poligon Education Fund ​Condemns White Supremacist Attack On The U.S. Capitol

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 7, 2021
Contact: media@poligonnational.org

​Poligon Condemns White Supremacist Attack on the U.S. Capitol
Washington, D.C. –Poligon Education Fund released the following statement regarding the violent breach of the U.S. Capitol by white supremacist militias in an attempt to disrupt the certification of the 2020 presidential election: 

Poligon Education Fund condemns the violence inflicted by white supremacist militias and supporters of President Trump at the halls of Congress yesterday. A woman was shot and killed, our elected officials and their staff hid in their chambers as they prayed for their lives, and explosives and weapons were found on Capitol grounds. The attack on the Capitol is an attack on our democracy and on the American people. 

The violence we witnessed is an attempt to erase the fact that in the midst of a pandemic, millions of Americans have turned out in record numbers to vote against the last four years of divisive, racist governance. Even when a powerful few have continuously made it difficult for people to exercise their voting rights, marginalized communities spoke truth to power. In the face of intimidation, violence, and loss, voters reaffirmed their rights and echoed their voices in the halls of power. Poligon, alongside coalition partners and allies, has mobilized millions of voters and will not stand down in the face of this insurrection. 

We commend Congress for its steadfastness in completing the vote count and certifying the election results. We demand members of Congress continue to work towards the peaceful transition of the newly elected administration, and ensure an extensive investigation and full accountability of all groups involved in the white supremacist militant attack, including leaders who have repeatedly empowered  this hateful rhetoric. President Trump’s failure to condemn white supremacy and his previous command to “stand back and stand by” did not only fuel an attack on our Capitol, but also paved the way for violence in statehouses all around the nation. 

The striking difference in the law enforcement’s efforts to protect the Capitol against Black Lives Matter defenders in June of 2020 and against white supremacist militias yesterday is a reminder of the deep, systemic violence harming our communities. We honor the victims of white supremacist violence and recognize the militarized, selective, and racist law enforcement practices. When exercising their right to protest, Black Lives Matter activists and indigenous rights defenders were met with police dogs, mace, militarized surveillance, rubber bullets, and water cannons. Not too long ago, black and brown children were tear gassed at peaceful protests. 

Poligon reaffirms its commitment to continue to hold our newly elected Congress and administration to account, to not only tackle the hateful rhetoric that threatens our communities, but also build a nation that keeps its people safe and allows everyone to thrive. This begins with coming together to swear in new leaders elected by the people, for the people.  

###
Poligon Education Fund is a non profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening Muslim American engagement with Congress through training, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.poligonnational.org.