Thank you for calling

We would like to thank all of you for participating in yesterday’s successful national call-in to demand transparency and reforms from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC). The phones were ringing all day as community members and allies across the country called the ADC national office during business hours today to make their voices heard. Together, we have voiced our criticism, engaged the community in an important discussion, and demonstrated that our call for a more principled and democratic Arab American civil rights organization enjoys popular support. It is now up to the ADC to listen and act on the will of its constituents by meaningfully engaging the community.

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You Call The Shots: Call-In For ADC Reform

For background, please see this op-ed in Al Jazeera English.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 29, 2011: National Call-In Day to the ADC: Keep the momentum going. Tell the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC): Change is Necessary.

Please call their office: 202-244-2990 between 9 AM and 5PM EST. on Wednesday June 29th.

Sample script:

My name is __________ and I am (an Arab American/an ally of the Arab American community/a civil rights advocate/past or present financial supporter of ADC). After what has happened with Malek Jandali and the growing distance between ADC and the Arab American community, I’m calling today to demand that ADC:

a.    Remove chairman Safa Rifka from the national board, because he has tainted the credibility of the organization and managed it through the organization’s decline.
b.     Institute major internal reforms in order to make ADC as representative of the Arab American community’s needs as possible.

Reforms that must be enacted are:

  • financial transparency
  • cutting ties with despotic regimes
  • democratic elections
  • public communications should reflect principles of human and civil rights
  • review and clarification of ADC’s relations with governmental agencies that openly curtail the civil liberties and dignity of Arab Americans.

(If you have any other concerns or comments, please voice them now) I also am concerned about…

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An initial victory: Ray Hanania removed from ADC board on website

It has come to our attention that the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) has removed Ray Hanania from its website as an ADC National Board Member, presumably in response to a campaign organized by community members across the country. This move indicates that Hanania is no longer a part of the ADC National Board. We applaud and welcome Hanania’s dismissal, although we firmly reiterate two other demands made by over 700 Arab-Americans, allies, and civil rights advocates concerned with the direction that the ADC has taken in recent years: the immediate removal of Safa Rifka, Chair of the ADC National Board, and the implementation of key reforms including financial transparency, cutting ties with despotic regimes, the issuing of public communications which reflect principles of human and civil rights, democratic elections, and the clarification of ADC’s relations with governmental agencies that openly curtail the civil liberties and dignity of Arab-Americans.

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600 Arab-Americans Call for ADC Spring and Resignation of Safa Rifka and Ray Hanania

Sign Now: http://www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/adc

In less than two days, over 600 Arab-Americans and have signed a petition calling on two board members to resign from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC). Signatories to this petition include former ADC staff members, prominent Arab-American professionals, artists, and activists, as well as non-Arab friends of the Arab-American community.

This rapid outpouring of concern is a testament to the commitment that so many have to ensure that this once thriving grassroots organization is rehabilitated – not destroyed. In calling for principled reform, signatories from all segments of our community have made a bold statement to ensure that the decades of hard work by employees, board members, volunteers and allies will not go to waste but will continue and be built upon to move ADC forward.

Unfortunately, ADC has become a shadow of itself over the past decade, and in many avoidable ways has grown out of touch with Arab-American communities. Therefore, we remain firm in our demand that accountability at the top of the organization is key to ensure that a new generation of energy and momentum is achieved. Only with fresh energy and principled leadership will ADC be adequately equipped to best represent our communities’ interests and defend human rights.

It is in this constructive spirit that we challenge ADC to embrace change. Change is in the air. Now is the time for this needed institution to become revitalized.

Thank you for your support. Please keep sharing the petition until the resignations occur.

To review the petition or sign: www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/adc

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