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Committee campaign defends immigrants' liberties

December 19, 2001|By KELLY GRANT, Staff Writer

CALEXICO — The Anti-Discrimination Committee of Imperial County is organizing an educational campaign to defend cultural diversity and the civil liberties of immigrants in the United States.

The campaign came as a suggestion from Omaram Abdeen of the Council on American Islamic Relations after he and the director of the Islamic Center of Imperial County, Imam Aziz Abdin, were featured speakers at a forum on Islam last week.

According to a press release, Abdeen suggested the most effective defense against discrimination and the curbing of civil liberties is education, especially of government officials, about the absolute necessity of respect for cultural diversity in a democratic society.

The Anti-Discrimination Committee has existed for about three years, said member Rogelio Reyes, director of the language institute at San Diego State University-Imperial Valley campus.


The committee, a county-wide organization, is made up of faculty and students from SDSU-IV, Imperial Valley College and individuals from the community at large, Reyes said.

Though the committee works against discrimination of all kinds, including ethnic, gender and sexual orientation, "our main focus has been on the border," Reyes said.

"Undocumented immigrants deserve protection of their civil liberties," Reyes said.

The committee advocates for amnesty for undocumented immigrants, something Reyes said "has been forgotten since 9-11."

The Anti-Discrimination Committee will meet from 7-8 tonight in the SDSU-IV student union in Calexico. For more information call 344-7141 or email

>>Staff Writer Kelly Grant can be reached at 337-3441.

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