International Cultural Center

An Open Forum Discussion with George Selim from the Department of Homeland Security

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On Saturday Oct 8, 2011 WORDE invited George Selim from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office for Civil Liberties and Civil Rights to the ICC.Muslim Americans from diverse backgrounds participated in the discussion, representing a broad cross section of Muslim American society.
George Selim began by providing an overview of the scope of his office’s activities and objectives. One of their top priorities is to reach out to communities affected by 9-11 – particularly Arab, Muslim, and Sikh communities. “By conducting these kinds of dialogues throughout the US, we hope to better understand communities’ concerns and needs,” he explained.  WORDE President, Dr. Hedieh Mirahmadi noted, “These dialogues are important for building mutual trust between the US Government and Muslim American communities.”
Several transportation and security issues were addressed by Selim, in addition to civil rights concerns. He explained how new technologies are being used by the agency to improve screening processes and to facilitate passenger travel. Participants were surprised to learn that a number of their concerns relating to aviation travel can be redressed online at www.dhs.gov/trip.
Members of local mosques, community centers and NGOs contributed to the vibrant discussion. Community leaders were very interested to discuss how they can work with the DHS to protect their communities. Many commented that they felt better educated and empowered as a result of the presentation and invited George to speak to their membership and generate ideas to work in partnership for improving security processes.
To learn more about upcoming dialogues with additional government agencies, visit our website frequently. Further information about the Office of Civil Liberties and Civil Rights at the DHS is available online and in their newsletter: http://www.dhs.gov/files/publications/crcl-at-work.shtm .

When: October 8, 2011.
Where: 19650 Club House Rd, Ste 205, Montgomery Village, MD 20886
Contact: Email Samia Haque or call (240) 396-5350.