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Highlights from the past 30-ish days
Poverty is a problem
Last year, we discovered that Muslims were the most likely faith community to report low income. This year, we learned this finding was not an anomaly: 37% of Muslim households in 2019 report incomes below $30,000, compared to 26% in the general public. Now we’re taking our analysis a step further. What do American Muslims believe about the cause of poverty? Do low-income Muslims feel poor? Read our analysis to find out.
A visit from Dr. Debbie Almontaser
This month, we joined our partners at the University of Michigan to host an Ann Arbor event with Dr. Debbie Almontaser. This fireside chat was an intimate conversation between Dr. Almontaser and ISPU’s Petra Alsoofy. They discussed Dr. Almontaser’s career as an educator and school administrator, the challenges she faced as a Muslim principal in post-9/11 New York City, and the research she has conducted on American Muslim school administrators. 
ISPU and Evangelical college students
This month, we joined our partners at Neighborly Faith for a two-day conference for Evangelical college students. University students from across the country gathered at Wheaton College to learn how to build meaningful relationships with their Muslim neighbors. We shared with attendees our data on the diversity of Muslims in America, information on why some Muslim women choose to wear hijab, and the best ways to combat Islamophobia. 

Our research shows that white Evangelicals are less likely than people of other faiths to know a Muslim, and they are more likely to believe Islamophobic stereotypes. This makes young Evangelicals an important demographic to reach. An anonymous survey of attendees conducted by Neighborly Faith after the event suggests the conference has done just that. Of those who identified as conservative Evangelical students, 49% had neutral or somewhat negative attitudes toward Muslims coming into the conference. Afterward, only 6% remained neutral, and none maintained a negative attitude.
Help us welcome our newest scholar, Sahar Khamis
Dr. Sahar Khamis is an associate professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is an expert on Arab and Muslim media, and the former Head of the Mass Communication Department in Qatar University. She co-authored Islam Dot Com: Contemporary Islamic Discourses in Cyberspace (2009) and Egyptian Revolution 2.0: Political Blogging, Civic Engagement and Citizen Journalism (2013). Dr. Khamis is a media commentator and analyst, a public speaker, a radio host, and a former human rights commissioner. Welcome to our scholar network, Dr. Khamis!
Our 2019 banquet is a wrap!
Thank you to everyone who attended our banquet in Dearborn, Michigan, on November 23. It was a wonderful night that celebrated facts and impactful research. We had a sold-out event, featuring speakers like comedian Aman Ali, Congressman Andy Levin (MI-9), Imam Omar Suleiman, local principal Kareemah Abbas, Dr. Nina Daoud, and journalist Karen Attiah. Thanks to many generous donors, we raised more than $189,000. We could not be more grateful to our incredible supporters for making all of our work possible!
In this article, Rowaida Abdelaziz explores the distinct obstacles Muslim women face when seeking help from domestic violence. ISPU data shows domestic violence plagues most faith groups equally. But as Abdelaziz writes, “The recent surge of Islamophobia—hate crimes, bigoted policies and daily incidents of harassment—has only made confronting domestic violence more challenging for the Muslim community.”
This month, we had two shout-outs in the Salt Lake Tribune: our board member and ISPU Educator Luna Banuri wrote a piece citing our data on American Muslim civic engagement. Then, Harry Reid, a former Senator from Nevada and Senate Majority Leader for nearly a decade, referenced our research in an article on why anti-Muslim rhetoric insults all Americans.
You can learn more about our participation in the Neighborly Faith conference at Wheaton in this article by Emily McFarlan Miller.

McCormack Place, Chicago, IL
December 27–29

Look for an upcoming newsletter to learn more about our sessions at MAS-ICNA.
ISPU produces research that seeks to build understanding, promote pluralism, and strengthen communities, but we cannot do so without your help. Please consider supporting us.
ISPU is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit research and education institute. Contributions to ISPU are zakat-eligible and tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.
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Washington, D.C. Office | 1110 Vermont Ave NW, Suite 500
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