Report: Bias, Hate Crimes Against Muslims Spike

What to Know

  • Harassment was the most frequent type of abuse in 2016, accounting for 18 percent of the total number of cases.
  • The most prevalent trigger of an anti-Muslim bias incident was the victim’s ethnicity or national origin in 35 percent of cases.
  • CAIR found hate crimes targeting Muslims surged 584 percent from 2014 to 2016.

A new report showed a dramatic increase in anti-Muslim incidents, rising by 57 percent from 2015 to 2016, with the most frequent incidents involving harassment.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, released the national report. It also showed a 65 percent increase in anti-Muslim incidents from 2014 to 2016.

Harassment, a non-violent or non-threatening bias incident, accounted for 18 percent of the reported incidents in 2016. The FBI was named in 15 percent of the bias cases and had the highest number of cases involving a federal agency.

In the D.C. metro area, anti-Muslim incidents from 95 in 2015 to 128 in 2106 while hate crimes rose from nine to 12 in the same time frame.

The report listed the triggers for the incidents, with the victim’s ethnicity or national origin accounting for 35 percent of the cases. Sixteen percent occurred as a result of a woman wearing a headscarf or hijab.

Members of CAIR said they plan to fight back by becoming more visible in the community. They have hired more attorneys to challenge policies from the Trump administration that they consider discriminatory against Muslims, like the travel ban executive order.

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