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US Religious Leaders Welcome FBI Hate Crimes Reporting

By: for religionnews.com on June 12, 2013
World News
Photo Credits: www.nytexaminer.com
n addition to its decision on tracking anti-Arab hate crimes, the FBI has agreed to track crimes against a number of religious groups it has never before tracked.
For Raed Jarrar, the FBI’s decision on June 5 to begin tracking hate crimes against Arabs is a battle won in a larger war.

“This is just one part of fixing the system, because unfortunately many hate crimes against Arab Americans have not been noticed,” said Jarrar, spokesman for the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.

In addition to its decision on tracking anti-Arab hate crimes, the FBI has agreed to track crimes against a number of religious groups it has never before tracked. The new categories include reporting crimes committed against Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Orthodox Christians.

Harleen Dhillon attends a vigil at Cathedral Square Park in Milwaukee on Sunday night Aug. 5, 2013 after shooter Wade Michael Page killed 6 people at a local Sikh temple that morning. RNS photo by Lacy Landre
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“I think having these additional categories is wonderful,” said Samir Kalra, director and fellow at the Hindu American Foundation. Though there were intense efforts to include Hindus, Sikhs and Arabs in the statistics, these other groups weren’t advocated for as heavily.

The original recommendation signed by more than 100 members of Congress called for the FBI to add Sikh, Hindu and Arab hate crimes to the data collected under the agency’s crime reporting program. The program now tracks religious hate crimes against Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Muslims and atheists/agnostics.

Read more: http://www.religionnews.com/2013/06/06/religious-leaders-welcome-fbi-hate-crimes-data-collection/
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