Refugee Resettlement Watch

CAIR threatens Lewiston, Maine School District

Posted by Ann Corcoran on November 21, 2009

November 28th:  Watch a TV report on the controversy, here

November 22nd:  For more background on the Somali migration to Lewiston and the role of Catholic Charities, go here.

Here we go!  Lewiston, the city that has struggled for years ever since federal government contractors, such as Catholic Charities, chose it as a site for refugee resettlement [correction: I am alerted by a reader that Catholic Charities didn’t choose Lewiston, see comments] and after a secondary migration of mostly Somali refugees picked this city in “welcoming” Maine, the joys of multiculturalism have come home to roost.  And, darn, just when town fathers thought citizens were finally getting the memo that diversity is strength something like this happens.

The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) the subject of an important new book entitled, “Muslim Mafia:Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America,” has the audacity to threaten to bring action against a school district that supposedly denied a Muslim girl the right to pray during school.  Here is the story from the Sun Journal today.  Hat tip: Mars

LEWISTON — A national Muslim civil rights organization has filed a formal request with the Lewiston School Department to allow a middle school student to pray on school property. The group also wants Lewiston to modify existing policy and provide “constitutionally protected religious accommodation,” such as a designated prayer room.

The group has also requested the school department institute diversity training for school staff, and to ensure the middle-schooler won’t face retaliation because of her request to pray at the Lewiston Middle School.

According to the Washington, D.C.,-based Council on American-Islamic Relations, seventh-grader Nasra Aden had been routinely “praying discreetly during her free time or lunch break in a corner of a school hallway.” But, on Tuesday, CAIR asserts a teacher told Aden “never to pray on school property” after Aden was seen preparing to kneel in prayer in a corner of one of the hallways.

After Aden told her mother, Jamad Warsame, what happened, Warsame spoke with school Principal Maureen Lachappelle and asked the school to accommodate her daughter’s desire to pray. According to CAIR, Warsame’s request was rebuffed and she has been “forced to pick up her daughter every day and take her to a nearby park to pray.”

Lachappelle said Aden is not being forced to leave school to pray, but that the district accommodated her mother’s request for her to leave the campus this past week for prayer.

Lewiston Superintendent Leon Levesque, who learned of CAIR’s written accusations hours after a press release had already been published on various Web sites, said, “Students are free to pray quietly during class if they choose as long as it’s not disruptive,” because “prayer is constitutionally protected in schools.”

“A stunning scenario of lack of multicultural competency” —they have learned the lingo!

In a written statement, Ismail Warsame called school officials’ alleged actions in responding to Aden’s effort to pray “a stunning scenario of lack of multicultural competency” and “clear violation of our constitutional rights to free religious expression.”

Warsame also accused Lachappelle of hanging up on him as he was asking whether the school department would accommodate the family’s request to accommodate the specific religious needs of certain students. Lachappelle acknowledged she did end a phone conversation with Warsame abruptly because “he wouldn’t take no for an answer.”

According to Lachappelle, after an involved conversation about the school’s position on allowing silent prayer, she said she told Warsame that “this is what the ruling is. We’re disagreeing, and I’m following district policy. I feel we need to end this conversation.”

Readers should know that we have had reports from many cities about the fact that some Muslim men do not respect female school teachers and administrators, so that may explain what happened in this phone conversation.

Ibraham Hooper threatens:  Do what we say, or else!

CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper said Friday that if the Lewiston School Department did not address its four requests to allow prayer, modify school policy, institute training and protect Aden from retaliation, “we wouldn’t really have much choice but to take the case further” because “the student has the legal right and the constitutional right to pray in school in a manner that is not disruptive to the learning environment.”

I wonder what Lewiston Mayor, Larry Gilbert, thinks now?   This sort of coincidence has happened before.  I had something to post earlier in the week about the Mayor of Lewiston and didn’t get to it, and then sure enough something like this story comes along and the two pieces fit nicely together. 

On the Mayor’s website just a couple of days ago appeared a report of a meeting where the City Council had a briefing about refugees and the resettlement programs in Maine.  It is there that we learned this:

Catholic Charities Maine (CCME) has been the only refugee resettlement agency in Maine during the past 30 years.

Read the glowing account of how great the refugee resettlement program is and then note this conclusion by the mayor.

I hope that sharing this information will assist in allaying the many misconceptions and fears that somehow permeate our community.

As I have mentioned in previous columns, it is only through communication with those who may appear to be different from us, that when we engage in conversation, we find that we have far more similarities than differences. Our skin color may be different, our language may be different and our customs may be different. What we do find is that we seek the same things, quality of life, family life, employment, religion, education, music, arts, etc. We find that we truly are one-humanity. Assimilation may take a bit of time, but it will happen just like it has with all of our forefathers who have made us this richest country in the world, a country of immigrants.

If we truly believe that we are all God’s children, then we must therefore believe that we are all brothers and sisters created in His image.

Tell that to the Islamic supremacists at CAIR!

We have covered Lewiston Somali problems extensively, use our search function and you will see what I mean!

For new readers:

The US State Department has admitted over 80,000 Somali refugees to the US in the last 25 years and then last year had to suspend family reunification because widespread immigration fraud was revealed through DNA testing.  That specific program has not yet been reopened, but will be soon.  Nevertheless, thousands of Somalis continue to be resettled as I write this.

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20 Responses to “CAIR threatens Lewiston, Maine School District”

  1. […] Check out CAIR threatening Lewiston, ME school district too, here. […]

  2. piekiz said

    Not too keen at defending Somalis here, but it seems your anti-somali stint makes you even look sillier. 80,000 somalis admitted to the US per year?…..where do you get your facts? Get some education people, learn about US immigration laws, bill of rights, and maybe then you can speak to issues intelligently.

    • acorcoran said

      Piekiz, Please read more carefully and you will note it says 80,000 in 25 years. We did very careful research at federal government webites to establish that number.

  3. […] the ‘uh-oh’ part.  I’m wagering that the next time we read about this case, CAIR will have ridden into town and it will no longer be your basic child-abuse case but will have […]

  4. Mad in Maine said

    Back again.
    It seems you folks got off the point near the end there. This started because a Somali student wanted to be allowed to pray in school.
    Wasn’t there a big hoopla about not even allowing the kids to say the Pledge of Allegence because it included “under God” in it?
    It’s Christmas here again in Maine and home grown Maine children aren’t allowed to have a Christmas party, hang up decorations or exchange gifts with each other; but we’re going to bow and now allow a special few to pray in the schools, bold faced, in front of those Maine children?

    Who’s minding the store now, I ask?

    Mad in Maine

  5. Jane Doe said

    Here’s a bit of info about her position @ CC

    Catholic Charities Maine Refugee and Immigration Services
    562 Congress Street
    Portland, ME 04101
    Contact: Program Director, Kaileigh Tara
    Telephone: 871-7437 ext. 111 FAX: 871-7465
    Web Site: http://www.ccmaine.org
    Since 1975, Refugee and Immigration Services has been the primary provider of resettlement services to refugees in Maine. Newcomers from 24 countries of Southeast Asia, Africa, the Near East , Europe, Cuba and the former Soviet Republics have been assisted. Individuals are invited to offer their services as employers, volunteers, and donors. Refugee and Immigration Services has initiated RRP INTERPRET, a non-profit service offering low-cost interpreter services in over 20 languages. Established to help limited English speakers access social, health, legal and other community services, RRP INTERPRET recruits, trains, and dispatches interpreters to serve as a link between service providers and linguistic minorities.

    Source: http://74.125.93.132/search?q=cache:sn0OET3JeeYJ:www.wacmaine.org/Page-44.html+kaileigh+tara+%22catholic+charities%22&cd=4&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

  6. Jane Doe said

    Oh no way, she no longer works for Catholic Charities. I don’t think she’s had a permanent full time job with benefits since then. As a matter of fact, there was a big writeup in the local newspaper last winter about her, and how she claimed to be homeless and slept in her car in front of the local police station, in order to get paperwork signed which would enable her to obtain a section 8 voucher. She was SO ANGRY that there was actually a HOUSING CRISIS!In LEWISTON! She was scratching her head and wondering why it was impossible for normal everyday people to get section 8 rents… when in actuality it was HER fault for helping to bring the Somalis here (which completely filled up all low income housing). That is irony for you, my friend.

    I could go on for days about the female ex mayor. I’ll forward further links and info in a private email.

    • acorcoran said

      Hi again, Jane, I have heard this same story from Manchester, NH, that poor Americans are shut out of Section 8 housing because the city has such a high number of refugees using the limited subsidized housing.

  7. Jane Doe said

    Mars is absolutely right, and here is an article from 2002 that supports the fact that Somalis found Lewiston all on their own:

    http://centralmaine.mainetoday.com/news/stories/020908somalis_.shtml

    However, those that lived in the area at the time remember how the then-mayor inked a deal with CC which kicked the influx into full swing. After the mayor finished up her term, she went on to gain employment @ CC. Not surprising…

  8. […] complying with Islamic sharia, the FBI-shunned CAIR suggests things could get litigious. Hat tip to Refugee Resettlement Watch who has much more on the Muslim immigration problems in Maine. From the Sun […]

  9. […] CAIR threatens Lewiston, Maine School District […]

  10. Christian said

    Iraqis definitely are going to Maine, but only a few dozen so far. The overall Iraqi caseload is large, and outside of Detroit (which is another story) there are no Iraqi communities who have the capacity to pull in their relatives, like the SoCal Vietnamese, NYC Soviets, or Miami Cubans do. The State Department and volags therefore distributes them to all States who participate in the program, including Maine.

  11. Citizen said

    This is nothing more that a “separation of church and state” issue! Sometimes our country OR a school district can’t see the forest through the trees.

  12. mars said

    catholic charities had an office in Portland prior to the major Somali influx . It was a relatively small operation that got overwhelmed with the mass migration and established a branch office in Lewiston because of it.

  13. acorcoran said

    I’m planning to write a post clarifying how Somalis came to Lewiston tomorrow, but in the meantime know that Catholic Charities was bringing Somalis to Maine prior to the influx that arrived in Lewiston right after 9/11. Now Catholic Charities has two offices in Maine—Portland and Lewiston, mentioned in previous comment—and is still resettling Somalis.

  14. acorcoran said

    I’m answering one of my own questions. Catholic Charities must be resettling refugees in Lewiston now because it is one of only two offices they have in Maine. http://www.ccmaine.org/info.php?info_id=73

  15. mars said

    let me just say that Lewiston was never ” chosen” as a resettlement site. The Somali community found it all on it’s own (scouts went looking for places with lots of public housing and easy access to public assistance programs and found it ). CCB only came in later (much later) when they found a community that ” needed” them.

    • acorcoran said

      Mars, do you know when Catholic Charities arrived and do you know if they are resettling refugees there now, either family reunification cases or other refugees since we know the Somali family reunifiction is still closed due to that discovery of widespread fraud.

      Is Catholic Charities providing other refugee and immigrant services in Lewiston?

      I did see somewhere that Iraqis also were going to Lewiston, why Lewiston if there aren’t any jobs?

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