Just prior to President Trump’s first official travel to a Muslim-majority country, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) released an update of anti-Muslim bias incidents reported to the organization in the first quarter of 2017. In more than 50 percent of incidents, federal government agencies were identified as the instigator. The civil rights data quarter one update also noted that 33 percent of the incidents were related to the Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States Executive Order, also known as the “Muslim Ban.”
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The most frequent type of incidents documented by CAIR so far in 2017 involved U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The second most common type of incidents involved episodes in which the complainant was questioned by FBI employees or otherwise appeared to be inappropriately targeted by the agency. Harassment, non-violent or non-threatening bias incidents such as verbal abuse, was the third most common type of incident. Incident involves issues with multiple federal government agencies and hate crimes rounded out the top five.
The most prevalent trigger of anti-Muslim bias incidents in 2017 has been the victim’s ethnicity or national origin, accounting for 33 percent of the total. Eleven percent of incidents have occurred as a result of an individual being perceived as Muslim. A Muslim woman’s headscarf has been a trigger in 8 percent of incidents.