June 25, 5:05 PM click here to comment > 3
Seattle Says No to “Global Faces of Terrorism” Ad
The Puget Sound Joint Terrorism Task Force launched the “Rewards for Justice” Campaign in Seattle the week of June 4. The program is administered from the US Department of State’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security. It pays rewards to individuals who provide information about individuals planning acts of international terrorism and it is an important safety mechanism.
Upon seeing the ads that were launched on the week of June 4 on the side of Metro buses, many members of our community were dismayed and decided to act. Arsalan Bukhari of the Council on American-Islamic Relations was an early voice raising concerns about these ads. Congressman Jim McDermott wrote a letter protesting the program, as did I, and King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski was working to get the ads removed as soon as possible.
Bukhari worked with the ACLU of Washington State to convene a meeting that included Magdaleno Rose-Avila and Sahar Fathi of our Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs. After a productive meeting, the lead investigator for the State Department’s “Rewards for Justice” program, Tim Corso, acknowledged our concerns with the ad that featured the language “Global Faces of Terrorism” along with photos of men from the Philippines, Somalia, Russia, Sudan and Algeria. He has agreed to take down this particular ad and to work with community advocates in doing outreach in Seattle going forward.
This is encouraging as Seattle is the first city to receive these ads and the recommendations provided by the community will drive how the program is implemented in other cities across the country.
This was made possible through the collaborative work by the many community advocates who came together on this issue: in particular (and in no specific order), the American Civil Liberties Union – Washington, Council on American-Islamic Relations (Washington Chapter), Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs, Office of King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski, Office of Congressman Jim McDermott, Minority Executive Directors Coalition, Mothers for Police Accountability, the Seattle Human Rights Commission, Consejo Counseling and Referral Service, SEIU Healthcare 775NW, Asian Counseling and Referral Service, the Northwest Washington Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church and the Faith Action Network (Seattle).
Posted by: Mayor Mike McGinn