Amid high emotions, the city of Beaverton, Oregon, has proclaimed March 2023 as the Muslim-American Heritage Appreciation month to celebrate the Muslim community and help them feel seen and valued.
“This month is twofold,” said City Councilor Nadia Hasan, who pushed for the proclamation with other community members, KOIN reported.
“One, to help our own communities feel seen, recognized, valued and heard, but also for our non-Muslim partners and friends to feel like they can walk into a mosque or they can come and meet with us and break fast with us and learn about our traditions.”
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The Muslim month, dedicated in March this year, coincides with the holy fasting month of Ramadan when Muslims fast from dawn to sun-down for 30 days.
Hassan hopes this month will be a time to recognize and value Muslims in the Beaverton community and share their culture and contributions to the city.
Learning & Healing
She believes Beaverton’s decision to honor this month is part of the ongoing learning and healing that must be done to help restore Muslim Americans’ sense of belonging.
“I think of the harm that that caused me to feel like I had to prove that I’m American enough to be in this country, when this is the country that I was born and raised in,” she added.
“This is the country that I call home. I am Americana. I’m American before I’m anything else,” Hasan said.
Previously, other states recognized the contributions of Muslims and their achievements.
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In 2022, Utah Gov. Spencer Cox declared July as Muslim American Heritage Month.
A year earlier, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker issued a proclamation in December to celebrate January as Muslim History Month.
Also in 2021, the city of Fullerton, Los Angeles, recognized August as “Muslim-American Appreciation Month”
Ohio also celebrates the Islamic Day of Ohio every second Saturday in October since 1987.