CAIR-Chicago’s Civil Rights Coordinator Christina Abraham and Governmental Relations Coordinator Sadiya Ahmed attended a Governor’s Racial Profiling Task Force meeting on Tuesday, December 6th, 2005 at the Thompson Center. The taskforce aims to make recommendations to the Governor on the issue of racial profiling based on the 2004 Illinois Traffic Stop Study. The study collected information on individuals stopped by the police such as the reason for the stop, outcome and if there were searches based on consent. It further analyzed the proportions of minorities stopped compared to the total number of minorities driving. To address the concerns raised by the study, a result of Senate Bill 30, the Governor has created a taskforce to look at and make recommendations on the issue of racial profiling.
The profiling study, originally a four year study designed to collect data from 2004 to 2008 is now proposed to be made permanent to address the disparities found in racial profiling. The taskforce created to further address this concern, is divided into two main subcommittees: Data Collection and Analysis committee and the New Initiatives committee. CAIR-Chicago has a member on each committee which will both start meeting in January.
“CAIR-Chicago’s role on these committees is integral in addressing the problem. It will bring a Muslim voice to the table and the opportunity for us, as a Muslims civil rights grassroots organization, to address our concerns directly and present what we think is a viable solution,” says Sadiya Ahmed. The goal of the data collection and analysis committee is to interpret the data collected by Northwestern University. The New Initiatives committee will then make recommendations to the Governor, who then plans to propose legislation to crackdown on racial profiling.
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