February 13, 2013 (Washington, DC) – A group of ten representatives in the U.S. Congress, led by Congressman Joe Crowley, is making a final push to persuade the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to begin tracking hate crimes against Sikhs. The FBI will make a final decision this coming June.
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If you believe hate crime victims deserve the dignity of recognition, and that law enforcement officials can do their jobs better with accurate statistics on hate crimes, please click here to send an automatic petition letter to your member of Congress.
According to Sikh Coalition surveys in New York and California, up to 10 percent of Sikhs may have experienced hate crimes since 9/11. Thus, compared to other communities, Sikhs may be hundreds of times more likely to experience hate crimes in their lifetimes. Even still, although the FBI tracks hate crimes against other communities, it does not track hate crimes against Sikhs.
The Sikh Coalition first raised this issue in January 2011. Since then, our community has experienced numerous hate crimes, including the suspected hate murder of two elderly Sikhs in Elk Grove, California; an assault on a Sikh cab driver in Sacramento, California; an assault on a Sikh transit worker in New York City; an assault on a Sikh cab driver in Seattle, Washington; and the massacre of six worshippers at the Oak Creek Gurdwara.
Last year, our request for Sikh hate crime tracking was endorsed by the Community Relations Service and Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. To maximize the chances that the FBI will make a favorable decision in June, please take two minutes and click here to send an automatic petition letter to your member of Congress.
We are approaching the final stages of a campaign that the Sikh Coalition began two years ago. Next week, the Sikh Coalition will issue another advisory explaining in more detail the complicated process that the FBI uses to make changes to its hate crime tracking records. We thank the Sikh community for its patience and persistence.