East Orange stood in solidarity with Muslim women worldwide in observance of the fifth annual World Hijab Day Wednesday, Feb. 1. Women, regardless of faith, are encouraged to wear hijabs to promote a more peaceful world in which global citizens respect each other.
East Orange Mayor Lester E. Taylor III, Council Chairman Ted Green and 5th Ward Councilman Mustafa Brent will make remarks during a brief observance ceremony to be held in the lobby of City Hall
“East Orange has a large, diverse and longstanding Muslim population that makes up the fabric of who we are as a community,” said Taylor. “With President Donald Trump’s recent travel ban and the spew of hate that has steadily increased against Muslim-Americans in 2016 and 2017, it is crucial that we show our support for religious freedom and the basic principles upon which this nation was founded.”
The day also brought awareness to the recent hate crime targeting the Muslim community in the wake of Trump’s election and recent travel ban.
Last month, the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations called for a hate crime investigation of anti-Islam hate graffiti targeting the home of a Bayonne pastor. The messages, spray-painted on Pastor Joseph Basile’s home, included “[Expletive] Islam” and were also found in the snow and on the nearby road.
In December, an African-American female Muslim Newark municipal employee was allegedly ridiculed and assaulted by a white male New Jersey State employee at the Newark One Stop Center. Her hijab was reportedly pulled off her head and thrown to the floor. The Newark Police Department arrested the perpetrator.