October 11, 2021 (Sacramento, CA) -- On Friday, October 8, Governor Gavin Newsom signed two important hate crime bills--AB 57
and AB 1126
--into law. Since 2019, the Sikh Coalition has worked with a coalition of civil rights organizations, experts, and advocates across California on at least eight pieces of legislation, including these bills:
AB 57: This bill will implement the State Auditor’s recommendations to better prevent, respond to, and document hate crimes in the state. It will also strengthen training and documentation requirements for peace officers through improved guidance, outreach, data collection, and reporting by the California Department of Justice. Since 2019, the Sikh Coalition has worked with a coalition of organizations to submit suggested amendments to the bill in order to ensure that it is inclusive of not just the Sikh community, but all vulnerable communities.
AB 1126: This bill will establish the Commission on the State of Hate in state government with the intent to monitor hate crimes and make policy recommendations to lawmakers. Since it was introduced, the Sikh Coalition has lobbied in support of the bill. Specifically, the Sikh Coalition supports the goals of the commission in providing resources and assistance to federal, state and local agencies and the public on the state of hate and advising on policy recommendations to promote intersocial education.
The Sikh Coalition has also made strong headway specific to the state of California as we continue working to combat bias and bigotry to better protect and support Sikhs across California. Our work includes successfully organizing Sikh awareness and hate crime trainings for law enforcement
, leading a California-focused webinar on protecting houses of worship, working with the California Attorney General’s office to help place Sikh community members on hate crimes task forces and roundtables, and leading an 18-month campaign, alongside the Jakara Movement,
to ensure that Sikh stories are included as part of California’s Ethnic Studies curriculum. We applaud the signing of AB101
, which will make California the first state in the nation to require ethnic studies for high school graduation. To learn more about our work with the California sangat on the ethnic studies model curriculum, click here
These initiatives support the Sikh Coalition’s larger organizational efforts to combat bias, bigotry, bullying and backlash to better protect Sikhs across California. For questions about our work to combat hate or build the Sikh community’s power in California, contact email@example.com
As always, the Sikh Coalition urges you to practice your faith fearlessly.