A Nikah – an Islamic marriage contract – has to fulfil certain requirements to be considered binding under Islamic law, one of which is the Mahr. A Mahr is a sum of money, jewelry, or any other valuable assets that is given by the groom to the wife as security in case of a breakdown in their relationship or death of the husband. The amount specified in the marriage contract and/or the property to be gifted may vary depending on many things, including the wealth of the groom. That gift becomes the wife’s exclusive property.
For Sexual Assault Awareness Month (#SAAM), let’s raise awareness about Islamophobically-motivated sexual assault, and all forms of sexual violence Muslim women face.
Muslim women are most often the targets of Islamophobic violence in North America and Europe, with visibly Muslim women – women who wear hijab and/or niqab – being particularly vulnerable. Black Muslim women also face heightened vulnerability to Islamophobic violence, because of the combined effect of anti-Black racism and Islamophobia.
When we think about Islamophobic violence against Muslim women, we often picture a woman being yelled at to “go back to where you came from” or even physically attacked. What’s been missing from the conversation however is the fact that Islamophobic violence can take the form of sexual assault.
Over the past year, I conducted research interviews with 21 Muslim women survivors of Islamophobic violence in Toronto and its surrounding regions. Throughout these interviews, Muslim women of all ages told me about being verbally harassed, threatened, and physically attacked. Importantly, some of them also told me about incidents of Islamophobically-motivated sexual assault.
Eritrean Canadian researcher Munira Abdulwasi is running a series of talks focused on raising awareness about mental health issues.
Munira Abdulwasi is a PhD candidate studying Kinesiology and Health Science at York University. Her research interests include marginalized individuals living with chronic disease and the health needs of Canadian Aboriginal veterans. She was awarded funding through the York University Agents of Change competition to implement a Health Promotion Series at TARIC Islamic Centre in Toronto.
Muslim Link interviewed Munira about her work with TARIC and why she feels mosques can be sites of health promotion on a variety of topics, particularly mental health.
Refugee Rights Day is a day to create awareness in the public consciousness about the rights and protection of refugees in Canada. Celebrated on April 4th, this day is significant particularly for refugee claimants, because it brings attention to the advances made in the protection of refugee rights in Canada as a result of the Supreme Court’s 1985 Singh Decision. In this decision, the Supreme Court found that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects the fundamental rights of refugees. The Court decided that ‘everyone’ includes refugee claimants in the sentence: ‘Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.’
Toronto-based Somali Canadian poet Naeema Hassan recently posted a video in response to Punish A Muslim Day on April 3rd, offering support to Muslim women who face the threat of Islamophobic violence daily.
Black Panther has taken the world by storm, experiencing box office success across North America, Europe, Africa and, to many in Hollywood’s surprise given a long history of rejecting films with Black leads, Asia.
Furthermore, a Blockbuster Hollywood film that centralizes Black characters and their narratives in authentic ways both in front of and behind the camera, and that also weaves in discussions about colonialism and slavery, is groundbreaking within the current socio-political context; it’s also deeply needed.
Despite this, online comments about Black Panther have been accusing it of Islamophobia, with some even going as far as to tell Muslims to boycott the film.
Shaykh Daood Butt will be speaking at this year’s I.LEAD Conference on Saturday, March 17. To purchase tickets, click here.
Muslim Link interviewed him about the theme of this year’s conference and the lessons he has learned from working closely with the Muslim community of Quebec City after the tragic mosque shooting that left six men dead, and several injured.