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The Sikh Coalition Avaaz
December 16, 2012
  • The Sikh Coalition Continues To Provide Support and Resources In Oak Creek

    The Sikh Coalition was invited back to Oak Creek this past week to conduct presentations for various government agencies and schools in the Milwaukee area. The Sikh Coalition's Education Director led presentations for the Oak Creek Police Department on both how to interact with members of the Sikh community as well as explained Sikhism's basic beliefs and values. The Mayor of Oak Creek extended a special invitation to the Coalition to present information about Sikhs to his staff at City Hall. Coverage of this presentation can be found here, as reported by the Oak Creek Patch.

    In addition, the Coalition's Education Director will be meeting with the superintendents, principals, teachers, and other educators for both Elm Brook and Oak Creek school districts. The Sikh Coalition will be delivering information about how to teach about Sikhs in the classroom, and also leading Sikh Awareness presentations at these school districts. Over 200 educators from both districts are expected to attend.

    Finally, the Sikh Coalition is hosting a training session for several Oak Creek and Elmbrook Sikh residents on how to lead these same presentations for their local schools and government agencies. In this way, the Coalition is empowering the local community and providing them with professional materials to educate their neighbors about the Sikh American community.

    Click here to view pictures of the presentations in Oak Creek.

  • White House Celebrates Guru Nanak Dev Ji's Gurpurab

    On Friday, December 7th the White House celebrated Guru Nanak Dev Ji's Gurpurab in a ceremony attended by over 75 community members around the United States, including representatives of the Sikh Coalition, American Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee, SALDEF, United Sikhs, and many other national community leaders. Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Tom Perez, highlighted the event by discussing the U.S. Department of Justice's ongoing commitment to the civil rights of the Sikh American community.

    While the Sikh Coalition commends the White House and Administration for taking unprecedented steps to engage and welcome the Sikh community, the Coalition notes that Sikhs who carry kirpans are still not permitted to enter the White House. In the past, Sikhs have entered Congress, the main United States Justice Department building in Washington DC, federal courts, FBI buildings, and even the White House with kirpans. The Coalition is committed to working with the White House to come to a sensible solution to this ongoing and serious civil rights concern.

    Click here to see photos.

  • Sikh Coalition Invited to White House for Holiday Reception

    On December 7, 2012 the Sikh Coalition's Executive Director, Sapreet Kaur, was invited to join President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama at a holiday reception in the East Wing of the White House. This reception included various leaders from around the country. Kanwar Saluja, Sikh Coalition Advisory Board Member and RingDNA COO, accompanied Sapreet in representing the Sikh American community at this special event.

    Click here to see photos.

  • Take Action to Hold TSA Accountable

    Have you been profiled by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) because of your race, ethnicity, religion, or nationality? Do you want to do something about it? For several years, the Sikh Coalition has asked the TSA to submit to an independent audit of its screening practices and prove that it does not engage in racial and religious discrimination. This month, the office of Rep. Judy Chu, Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), is circulating a letter to her colleagues in the U.S. Congress, calling on the TSA to address concerns about profiling and pursue an independent audit. We encourage you to call your elected representative in Congress and request that they endorse Congresswoman Chu’s letter to the TSA.
  • Click here to find your Member of Congress.
  • (Video) Important Progress in Campaign to Track Anti-Sikh Hate Crimes

    The Sikh Coalition is pleased to report that two components of the U.S. Department of Justice—the Civil Rights Division and Community Relations Service—have formally recommended that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) begin tracking hate crimes against Sikhs. Although these recommendations are not binding on the FBI, they represent the highest level endorsements to date by the Justice Department of our campaign to ensure that hate crimes against our community are tracked.
  • Click here to watch the Sikh Coalition's Director of Law & Policy provide an update on this important work.
  • To read more, click here.
  • California Sikhs Shine

    With the declaration of November as Sikh Awareness and Appreciation Month in California, Sikhs took advantage of this wonderful opportunity to educate their neighbors about Sikhi by taking inspiration from a list of projects provided by the Sikh Coalition. They have organized events, led presentations and engaged with the media to celebrate this month.

    We are inspired by the leadership of the California sangat in educating their neighbors about Sikhi.

    Click here to read more.

  • Know Your Rights As You Travel for the Holidays

    As the holiday travel season approaches, the Sikh Coalition urges Sikh travelers everywhere to understand their rights as a Sikh Traveler and to download FlyRights.

    To assist you as you travel, here are some quick tips:

    • If a TSA officer wants to conduct a pat down of your turban, you have the option of patting down your own turban rather than having a TSA officer pat it down. Please see our Sikh Traveler Bill of Rights for more details.
    • Sikhs have the right to undergo screening in a private area.

    For more information, click here.

  • After Year-Long Engagement, Monroe-Woodbury Central School District, NY Organizes Sikh Awareness Events

    On December 11, 2012, the Sikh Coalition delivered a presentation on basic Sikh beliefs as well as gave a brief summary of the Coalition's mission and work for the Woodbury Central School District in New York. The district's superintendents and all principals were present for this meeting. Upon hearing the presentation, many administrators related to the Coalition how appreciative they are for the presentation and educational materials. This event was the culmination of a year-long series of discussions between the school district and Sikh parents Ishmeet and Gurvy Sethi. The Sikh Coalition was happy to work with the Sethis to ensure that the highest levels of district administrators received the presentation. Now, the district is inviting the Sikh community back next year to partner on several diversity and multi-cultural awareness events at several schools in the district. The Sikh Coalition commends the Sethis on their perseverance and dedication to education.
  • Sikh Presenter's Course Graduate Featured in Article and Video

    Savraj Singh, a graduate from the Sikh Coalition's Sikh Presenter's Course, led a presentation on basic Sikh beliefs for Jewish seniors at a community center in New Jersey. An article was written about Savraj's presentation in the New York Torch, and the author also created a video to accompany the article. The Coalition would like to recognize Savraj Singh for the countless presentations he has given since graduating from the Course, and commend him for his commitment to educating his neighbors on Sikhism.
  • Click here to read the article.
  • Click here to watch the video.
  • Interested in becoming a Sikh Coalition Intern? Apply Today!

    The Sikh Coalition Internship Program is excited to announce opening positions for spring and summer 2013! The internship program allows students pursuing undergraduate or graduate studies to gain hands-on experience in promoting the civil and human rights of all individuals. Throughout the years, interns have worked to further the mission and vision of the Sikh Coalition by helping to achieve legal victories, as well as educating and empowering the community and contributing to the growth of the organization.

    If you would like to join the Sikh Coalition in protecting the civil and human rights of all individuals, click here!

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