The Sikh Youth Alliance is calling for New Jersey to mandate the studies of Sikhism in state schools.
The push follows a similar one for Asian American Studies signed by Governor Phil Murphy in January 2022.
“With the increasing cases of discrimination, hate and
bias crime against Asian Americans, including Sikhs, we believe it is
important for us to mainstream the course curriculum on Sikhism
instruction into social studies curriculum,” said Bhupindar Singh in an email sent to AsAmNews. “Sikhs have been victims of Islamophobia since 9/11 and after COVID the situation for Asian Americans, including Sikhs have experienced downslide.”
The latest statistics from the FBI found that Sikhs are second to Jews in attacks based on religious bigotry. The Feds received 1005 reports of religious bias crimes in 2021. Investigators recorded 31.9% of the cases as anti-Jewish incidents. They classified 21.3% of the incidents as anti-Sikhs, followed by anti-Islam at 9.5%.
Assembly Resolution AR 172 and Senate Resolution SR 108 are sponsored by Carol Murphy in the Assembly and Linda Greenstein in the Senate.
The Sikh Youth Alliance estimates that over 50 percent of Sikh children
and roughly 67 percent of turbaned Sikhs endure physical, or verbal abuse at schools.
The resolutions call for the inclusion of Sikh history, religion and identity in social studies.
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