SANTA CLARA (KPIX 5) — The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) on Monday released a new report about the bullying of Muslim students in California schools that showed incidents are on the rise.
Of the more than California 1,000 students between the ages of 11 and 18 surveyed for the study, more than half of them said they have experienced some form of bullying in school for their faith.
“With the political environment going on, it only took a few days after the election results for her to be physically targeted and there were multiple incidents last year,” said Noshava Afzal, a Bay Area mother whose daughter was bullied.
The new study performed and released by CAIR Monday morning indicates fewer Muslim students feel safe, welcome, and respected in their schools.
Numbers are down from surveys in previous years.
“In response to every single question that we asked students, there was an increase in the amount of discrimination and hatred that they have felt in school by other peers, but also in some cases, by teachers and administrators,” said CAIR civil rights attorney Brittney Rezaei.
Of the 1,000 Californian Muslim students surveyed, 161 of them were from the Bay Area.
CAIR says the numbers from the new study will help as they work to find solutions and encourage Muslim students to speak out if necessary.
“It’s really hard to hear because unfortunately, so many of these incidents go unreported,” said Rezaei.
The report gives recommendations for Congress and schools to create a more inclusive environment.