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Primary Press Contact: Jagmeet Singh
Media & Communications Manager, the Sikh Coalition
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 919-260-5500

Secondary Press Contact: Mark Reading-Smith
Media & Communications Director, the Sikh Coalition
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202-380-8489
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New Reporting Tool Launched To Combat Spike in Bigoted Backlash

For Immediate Release
 

February 2, 2016 (Washington D.C.) – Exactly two months after the tragic shooting in San Bernardino, California, the Sikh Coalition has launched Report Hate, a new online tool for Sikh community members to report incidents of harassment, discrimination and hate violence. The new reporting resource was developed to make it easier for Sikhs to report incidents, even if  they are not legally actionable or a crime.

 

“America belongs to all of us,” said the Sikh Coalition’s Law and Policy Director, Arjun Singh. “Data helps drive change and victims of bigotry and hate violence should document and report their mistreatment through this new tool.”

 

The Sikh Coalition intends to use this information to better identify the types of bigotry Sikh Americans face as well as the geographic areas where Sikh Americans are acutely vulnerable. The data also enables us to better target our outreach efforts to law enforcement, educators, community leaders and lawmakers at the local, state and federal levels.

 

Sikh Americans, who have been an integral part of the American fabric for 125 years, practice the fifth largest religion in the world. The Sikh articles of faith, including the beard and turban, represent equality and justice for all. In the past two months, the number of legal intakes the Sikh Coalition has processed has increased three fold as compared to recent years.

 

“The Sikh articles of faith are easy targets for the bigoted and hateful ,” said Arjun Singh. “We are committed to combating this problem, especially when hate violence and hateful rhetoric are on the rise.”

 

Last month, Parminder Singh, a turbaned and bearded Sikh, was driving across the country with his family when he stopped at a truck stop near Knoxville, Tennessee. In the parking lot, another truck driver angrily shouted, "Why did you come here? Go back to where you came from!" Mr. Singh called the police and contacted the Sikh Coalition. "This type of incident is something many Sikh American families in the United States have experienced at some point over the past 15 years," said Mr. Singh. "However, these verbal attacks almost never get reported. The new Report Hate resource now allows this incident to become an important data point that highlights the much bigger problem of hate in America."

 

The Sikh Coalition has represented hate crime clients throughout the United States for the past 15 years and is currently representing multiple clients in cases that have happened since the San Bernardino attacks. For all media inquiries, please contact Jagmeet Singh or Mark Reading-Smith. Jagmeet or Mark can promptly connect you with Sikh Coalition experts for interviews.

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About the Sikh Coalition

The Sikh Coalition is a community-based organization that works towards the realization of civil and human rights for all people. In particular, we work towards a world where Sikhs may freely practice and enjoy their faith while fostering strong relations with their local community wherever they may be.

We pursue our mission by:

  • Providing direct legal services to persons whose civil or human rights are violated;
  • Advocating for law and policies that are respectful of fundamental rights;
  • Promoting appreciation for diversity through education; and
  • Fostering civic engagement in order to promote local community empowerment

With a full-time staff of 10 and offices in New York City, Fremont, CA and Washington D.C., we are the most-staffed Sikh organization in the history of the United States.

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