“This historic victory is the culmination of a decades-long battle by local leaders to seek equal recognition for the county’s thousands of Muslim children,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry in a statement sent to AboutIslam.net.
“It sends a message to Muslim students and parents that school officials are paying attention to their needs. That they are valued, seen and heard.”
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, and Jetpac, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing American Muslim representation in politics and the media, and MPower Change, one of the largest Muslim-led social and racial justice organizations in the United States, today reported 26 American Muslim electoral victories nationwide in yesterday’s off-year election.
Throughout 2019, CAIR, Jetpac and MPower Change have identified at least 34 Muslim candidates who won elections in local and statewide races across the country. More than 80 Muslims ran for office this year at the local and state level.
“These electoral victories clearly indicate that American Muslims are stepping up and showing their commitment to public service,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad.
“We congratulate these Muslim trailblazers who are creating a more inclusive democracy for everyone.”
“American Muslims are running for office in large numbers because more of us are realizing that we have a unique perspective that will help fix massive inequities in healthcare, education, and the criminal legal system,” said Jetpac Executive Director Mohammed Missouri.
“We’re also aware that staying on the sidelines while anti-Muslim bigotry runs rampant will increase the threat to our community. A truly representative Democracy will help us get out of this dark era as a stronger society.”
“What do Muslim Americans do during a time of heightened Islamophobia under a xenophobic administration? We run for office and win,” said MPower Change’s Executive Director Linda Sarsour.
“Muslim Americans are engaging in the democratic process in unprecedented ways. We can’t wait to continue this wave in 2020 to save our democracy.”
Winners in November 5 elections included Ghazala Hashmi who was elected as the first Muslim-American Senator in Virginia.
Moreover, Safiya Khalid became the first Somali-American Muslim woman to win a seat on the Lewiston City Council, Maine.
Nadia Mohamed also won a seat on the St. Louis Park City Council in Minnesota.
Also, Democrat Abrar Omeish clinched one of three vacant seats on the Fairfax County School Board.
Previously, many Muslim women have been making achievements in political circles recently.
For example, Zulfat Suara made history in September after becoming the first Muslim elected to a Metro seat in Nashville.
Also in 2018, Ilhan Omar was elected as the first Somali-American (and hijab-wearing!) Congresswoman in the US.
Moreover, Rashida Tlaib, a Palestinian-American Congresswoman, was also elected to represent the 13th congressional district of Michigan.
Movita Johnson-Harrell made history last March after winning the contested special election for the 190th District seat, becoming the first Muslim woman to be elected as a state representative in Pennsylvania.