NCCM denounces anti-Muslim vandalism in North York

-For Immediate Release-

(Ottawa – June 8, 2015) The National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM), a prominent Muslim civil liberties advocacy organization, today denounces the anti-Muslim vandalism of an apartment building in North York, Ontario which occurred during the night on Sunday. According to reports, vandals spray-painted derogatory comments directed against the Prophet Muhammad on the building.

“This incident is the latest in a rash of anti-Muslim harassment and vandalism that we have been documenting in recent weeks. As we have said before, this only tells part of a broader story as hate crimes are typically under-reported. This is why NCCM will be launching a national hate-crimes awareness campaign tomorrow,” says NCCM Executive Director Ihsaan Gardee. A media advisory will be issued later today.

“These cowardly acts are un-Canadian. Canadian Muslims know that such acts do not represent the views of the vast majority of our fellow citizens. We urge authorities to investigate this incident as a hate crime to send a clear message that these types of criminal actions are unacceptable.

“In the wake of this latest anti-Muslim incident, it is incumbent on our elected leaders, public officials and community partners to demonstrate leadership by speaking out forcefully against Islamophobia and hatred in all its forms. Canadian multiculturalism, while still a work-in-progress, remains the envy of the world wherein its pluralism is strengthened by its diversity.”

This incident comes on the heels of one reported last week in Calgary, Alberta where a Muslim-owned restaurant was also spray-painted. The NCCM is currently following up on additional cases of possible hate crimes and incidents targeting individuals and organizations which continue to be reported to our office.

“We urge community members to remain vigilant and to immediately report suspicious behaviour to the proper authorities, as well as to the NCCM, in order to establish a clear record of such incidents,” adds Gardee.

For more information on keeping their communities safe, the NCCM urges Muslim communities across the country to review the NCCM’s Community Safety Guide. The NCCM presents workshops to educate communities about their rights and responsibilities when confronted with a possible hate crime.

The NCCM is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit grassroots advocacy organization. It is a leading voice for Muslim civic engagement and the promotion of human rights.

CONTACT: Ihsaan Gardee, Executive Director, 613.254.9704