CAIR- Minnesota seeks probe into school officials’ mistreatment of Muslim student

Minnesota (IINA) – The Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MN) called for an investigation into the alleged use of excessive force by a security officer and resource officer at a high school in the state.

On Thursday, a female Muslim student at Apple Valley High School in Apple Valley, Minnesota, was reportedly verbally harassed by a male student and called a ‘ terrorist. The school security guard, who was first on the scene, allegedly used physical force against the Muslim student. The school’s police officer later arrested the Muslim student.

In the process of her detention, the student’s hijab was removed. She was taken to the Apple Valley Police Department, questioned and released.

On Friday, school officials met with the family of the student and informed them that she is suspended until the end of the school year.

CAIR-MN reports that it has received complaints from a dozen Muslim students at Apple Valley High School who feel unsafe due to this and other unreported incidents involving the same officer.

“We are concerned about the apparent use of excessive force in this incident and about the suspension of the Muslim student, who appears to have been a victim of bullying,” said CAIR-MN Executive Director Jaylani Hussein. “We are also concerned about the growing number of Muslim students who report feeling unsafe because of how this incident was handled by the school officers.

Hussein added that CAIR-MN has reached out to the school principal and are in talks about the incident.

A study by CAIR’s California office reported that 55 percent of American Muslim students attending California public schools experience some form of bullying based on their religious identity. That is twice as high as the national statistic for students who report being bullied at school.

The study also indicated that 20 percent of Muslim students say they have experienced discrimination by school staff.

CAIR offers a booklet, called “An Educator’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices,” designed to help school officials provide a positive learning environment for Muslim students.

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

Source: International Islamic News Agency