American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee

The American Arab Anti Discrimination Committee (ADC) is a grassroots civil rights organization open to all regardless of background, faith and ethnicity committed to defending the rights of people of Arab descent and promoting their rich cultural heritage. The ADC, which is non-sectarian and non-partisan, is the largest Arab-American grassroots civil rights organization in the United States. It was founded in 1980 by former United States Senator James Abourezk; and it has chapters nationwide, and members in all the 50 states. Advisory Board members include Muhammad Ali, Queen Noor of Jordan, several U.S. Congressmen and Casey Kasem. ADC has members in all 50 US states and is the largest Arab-American organization of its kind. AS of writing the ADC Communications Department has made over 3000 radio and television appearances.

ADC addresses discrimination and bias against Arab-Americans and advocates for a more balanced US policy towards the Middle East.

ADC has made great strides in correcting the stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims, prejudice and fear. Consistent with its educational mission, ADC issues a bi-monthly newsletter; "Issue Papers" and "Special Reports" that study key issues of defamation and discrimination; community studies; and legal, media and educational guides. Additionally, ADC is an active member of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR) and the only Arab-American organization that is a member.

ADC's Communications Department challenges defamation, stereotyping and bias in films, television and news reporting. Staff have made thousands of appearances on major national and international media outlets. ADC spokespersons are widely recognized as the authoritative voice on Arab-American affairs, US foreign policy, Islam, civil rights and many other daily news items.

The Communications Department's work has been featured in "Newsweek", and also noted by the "New York Press" as "Outstanding Spokesperson" for the Arab-American cause. ADC Communications staff also frequently serve as editorial consultants for a wide range of documentaries and educational programs that have aired on PBS, the Discovery Channel, Nickelodeon, Showtime, HBO, and MTV. The Communications Department is also instrumental in organizing and promoting film festivals and cultural events celebrating Arab, Muslim, and Arab-American cinema, theatre, and the arts.

ADC's legal department offers counseling in cases of discrimination and defamation, and provides assistance in selected litigation. Since September 11, ADC attorneys have been addressing hundreds of cases and have filed briefs and lawsuits against airlines for discrimination on the basis of ethnicity and national origin; against the United States government for discriminatory detentions of Arabs and Muslims without probable cause, and for discrimination against Arab Americans in the workplace, in addition to counseling and assisting victims of anti-Arab hate crimes. For these reasons, ADC’s Legal Department was the recipient of the 2003 American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) Human Rights Award.

The Government Affairs affiliate of ADC works with Congress, the White House, the State and Justice Departments, as well as other elements of government to promote the interests of the community. ADC’s testimony before Congress and elsewhere is impeccable, as ADC ensures that every assertion is documented and that a fair view of each situation is taken. ADC members, who are US citizens, can contribute to the NAAA-ADC PAC to support political candidates for federal office.

ADC’s Organizing Department mobilizes the community by coordinating the efforts of chapters, local offices, and activists across the nation and directing ADC’s national campaigns. As a grassroots organization, ADC’s successes depend on the work of dedicated volunteers and activists. In order to ensure maximum efficiency in covering all dimensions of organizing and mobilizing the community, each ADC chapter includes membership, education, outreach, media, and fundraising committees. ADC’s annual Convention draws participants from around the world and is the largest gathering of Arab Americans and their friends. The Convention features workshops, panel discussions, banquets, exhibits, and a two-day film festival.

The ADC Research Institute (ADCRI), which was founded in 1981, is a Section 501(c)(3) educational organization that sponsors a wide range of programs on behalf of Arab Americans and of importance to all Americans. ADCRI programs include research studies, seminars, conferences and publications that document and analyze the discrimination faced by Arab Americans in the workplace, schools, media, and governmental agencies and institutions. They also promote a better understanding of the rich Arab cultural heritage by the public and policy makers. A noteworthy achievement in this respect is ADC's Reaching the Teachers campaign, a program that provides lesson plans, background articles, fact sheets, bibliographies and other resources to educators to ensure an accurate, objective and fair portrayal of Arab history and culture in schools and empowers Arab Americans to become more actively involved in their local schools. ADC's intern program for undergraduate, graduate and law students trains a new generation of Arab-American leaders.

ADC is now celebrating 26 years of dedicated service to civil and human rights, and remains committed to building bridges with other communities and forging coalitions with organizations throughout the country on issues of mutual concern.

External links

* [ Official website]

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