CBS Chicago: Lawyer delighted by ruling allowing suburban Islamic center to open

DUPAGE COUNTY, Ill. (CBS) – A lawyer for Chicago’s Council on American-Islamic Relations says he is delighted with a ruling by a federal judge – which sides with a suburban Islamic religious center’s right to open – and goes against DuPage County.

“You know, I think the county just dug in its heels on this matter,” said Kevin Vodak.

Kevin Vodak is the litigation director at the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which fought on behalf of the Irshad Islamic Learning Center — a fight which was opposed by the DuPage County Board.

A federal judge has now sided with the learning center – but found there wasn’t enough evidence to prove discrimination.

“In other words, we couldn’t necessarily prove that Irshad was treated differently because it’s a Muslim institution. But at the same time, federal laws require that the government properly justify its denial,” said Vodak. “And here, the records show that there really was not a proper justification.”

A spokesman for the DuPage County State’s Attorney says there is no comment at this point about a possible appeal.