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Factsheet: Organizations addressing Islamophobia

Published on 05 Dec 2018

IMPACT: Amid increased anti-Muslim hate crimes and the implementation of policies that target Muslims, legal defense groups along with advocacy organizations serve as resources and advocates on behalf of those affected.

This is a non-exhaustive list of organizations working to address anti-Muslim prejudice and discrimination. Some groups work exclusively on combating Islamophobia through litigation, while others have broader civil rights, racial justice, and interfaith dialogue objectives.

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee: Established in 1980, ADC is a civil rights organization committed to defending the rights of people of Arab descent. Today it is the largest Arab American grassroots organization. ADC works on a number of issues including legal and advocacy programs on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE), hate crimes, immigration, surveillance & profiling.

Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR): CAIR is the largest Muslim civil liberties organizations in the United States with regional offices nationwide. Its civil rights department represents and advocates on behalf of Muslims who’ve experienced religious discrimination, defamation, or hate crimes. Hate Hurts, a special project of CAIR’s Arizona chapter, focuses on documenting and publicizing cases of Islamophobia and hate crimes.

Center for Constitutional Rights: CCR combats structural Islamophobia through its “Muslim Profiling” program, which works on cases involving religious and racial profiling, government surveillance, illegal detentions, and torture at the hands of the state.

DRUM: Desis Rising Up & Moving : Established in 2000, DRUM is a grassroots organization composed  of South Asian immigrant workers and youth in New York City. DRUM played an instrumental role in opposing the National Security Entry-Exit Registry System (NSEERS), a Special Registrations program targeting the Muslim community.

Muslim Advocates: Muslim Advocates is a national legal advocacy and educational organization working on civil rights to guarantee freedom and justice for Americans of all faiths. The organization “counters anti-Muslim hate by challenging bigotry and hate crimes” through “high impact lawsuits against those who wrongfully target American Muslims.”

Muslim anti-Racism Collaborative (MuslimARC): Muslim ARC was founded by Namira Islam, Margari Aziza Hill, and Hind Makki in 2014. It is a human rights organization that seeks to provide racial justice education and resources to advance racial justice. The organization focuses on “internalized racism, intra-Muslim racism, institutional racism, and Global White Supremacy.”

Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign: Founded in 2010 by over 20 national religious groups in Washington, D.C., this interfaith coalition of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian organizations works from the grassroots level to national advocacy, including working with Congress and the White House, in an effort to end anti-Muslim bigotry.

South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT): Founded in 2000, SAALT is a national advocacy organization that works on behalf of all South Asians in the United States. SAALT collects data and publishes reports on hate crimes, Islamophobia, and discrimination.

Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC): The SPLC is a national legal advocacy organization specializing in civil rights litigation. It was founded in 1971 in Alabama by lawyers Morris Dees and Joe Levin, to tackle issues of racism, discrimination, and institutional discrimination. SPLC monitors the “activities of domestic hate groups and other extremists,” including anti-Muslim organizations and “anti-Muslim extremists.”  

Washington Peace Center: WPC was founded by Quaker activist Larry Scott in 1963 in Washington, D.C. In addition to educating and providing resources to the public and grassroots activists, WPC also organizes workshops on Islamophobia.