The Michigan Muslim Community Council has served the community for over 25 years. Our new name was adopted in 2012 after the merging of the Council of the Islamic Organizations of Michigan (CIOM) and the Islamic Shura Council of Michigan (ISCOM), and reflects our new focus on community building with our expanded board. MMCC is an umbrella organization that unifies and coordinates the large Muslim community in Michigan to make the state a better place for all.
Michigan Muslims Urge Governor to Welcome Refugees
(Royal Oak, Michigan 11/18/2015)- The Michigan Muslim Community Council is disappointed that Governor Snyder has decided to pause his support for the resettlement of Syrian refugees into Michigan. After the recent horrific terrorist attacks in Paris, Beirut and Egypt, it is normal to have fear and care about the well being of our own families here in Michigan. Instead of falling victim to fear, this should be a time to increase our empathy for victims of violence and extremism.
Refugees from the Middle East already undergo an extensive security clearance process. Unlike in Europe, Syrian refugees aren’t sneaking into the U.S. They’re being processed in over months, or even years with thorough background checks and interviews. Over 750,000 refugees have come to the United States over the past 10 years, and none of them have been charged with domestic terrorism. We appreciate the Governor’s concern about the safety and welfare of Michiganians, but feel that this fear is unfounded due to the rigorous screening process in place.
Numerous nonprofits have been preparing for the influx of Syrian refugees to Michigan. We need Gov. Snyder to help keep Michigan a state that welcomes refugees, and recognizes the cultural and economic benefits that they bring. The Arab and Muslim immigrants have reduced crime and improved housing values and tax collection in almost every region they have touched from Dearborn to Canton to Flint to Hamtramck to Rochester Hills. Over 75% of the refugees are self sufficient within a few months. In the case of Syrian refugees in Michigan, there are already many nonprofits that are prepared to assist refugees on their path to become fully independent, integrated and contributing.
In an ideal world, displaced Syrians could simply return to safe, comfortable homes. The harsh reality is that their lives have been turned upside down by over 4 years of terrorism perpetrated by the Syrian dictator Bashar Al-Assad and more recently, by ISIS. According to the UN, there are 6.5 million internally displaced Syrians and 4.2 million that have fled the country. Most of these refugees are cared for in Turkey, Jordan, and Lebanon. The global failure to resolve the conflict or to provide a safe haven for civilians to flee to has put us in the position we are in today.
By turning people away using the specter of fear, we are turning away the greatest victims of ISIS, the refugees of Syria. We also cast suspicion and dislike towards people with Arab and Muslim backgrounds. Instead, we can do better by showing compassion and kindness, and allowing Syrian refugees to call Michigan their new home. Then, we will have lived up to our ideals.
For questions or Inquiries please contact:
Iman Abdulrazzak: Director of the Michigan Muslim Community Council Syrian Refugee Taskforce
Michigan Muslim Community Council
30701 Woodward Avenue, Suite 310
Royal Oak, MI 48073
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