Dear Neighbors, Stakeholders and Partners,
My heart and deepest condolences go out to the families devastated by the tragic and hate-fueled shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio. I am heartbroken by the senseless acts of violence targeting immigrant and African American communities in this country. Unfortunately, our national leaders do not take effective action and the political climate continues to allow these thoughts and actions to fester.
OHR has been actively working with both government and community partners on how to better protect the immigrant community from the hateful rhetoric and threats. Mayor Bowser has stated unequivocally that we are a city that welcomes all people and serves all our immigrant families, neighbors and business leaders. With the threats of increased ICE raids and arrests in the recent months, the Mayor has responded by providing grants that will pay for pathways to citizenship. Our partners at the Metropolitan Police Department recently released videos (
to view) to remind residents that our local police officers do not enforce federal immigration policies. Also, our District Hate Crime Response tracks reports of potential hate or bias motivated crimes.
Symbols that aim to terrorize people, misleading posters and especially violence towards any of our most vulnerable communities will not be tolerated in the District
We need you to stay informed and engaged. If you see evidence of a hate or bias motivated crime please remember to call 911. Please also remember that here at the Office of Human Rights we enforce the most progressive anti-discrimination laws in the U.S. It is illegal to discriminate based on national origin, race or personal appearance and many more protected identities and traits. If you or someone you know feels like they are being discriminating against, please call 202-727-4559.
Have a wonderful month of August and stay vigilant!
Yours in service,