MPAC’s President, Salam Al-Marayati was appointed by Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas to the Faith-Based Security Advisory Council. Salam joins 24 other new members on the Council, an external advisory body providing advice to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Reflecting on his appointment, Salam Al-Marayati stated “I look forward to working with faith leaders of other communities to determine the best steps in protecting houses of worship and our communities against any form of violence. I also look forward to developing relations with these faith leaders to develop a united stand for a pluralistic democracy.”
The Council will provide organizationally independent, strategic, timely, specific, and actionable advice to the Secretary on diverse homeland security matters. Specifically, the Council’s contributions will enhance the Department’s work to protect houses of worship; improve coordination and information sharing of threat information with the faith community, and through the faith community, within the broader communities in which they serve; increase access to DHS resources by building trust and addressing potential barriers; and prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from acts of targeted violence, terrorism, and other threats.
Salam joins Imam Mohamed Hagmagid of the ADAMS Center in Northern Virginia, Imam Talib Shareef of the Nation’s Mosque, and Dearborn, Michigan Police Department’s newly appointed Chief Issa Shahin as the four Muslims of the 24-member council.
The Council’s membership reflects President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas’ priorities on diversity, equity, and inclusion, and will ensure a wide range of diverse voices across various faith traditions. The members announced to the Advisory Council represent various faith communities and a diversity of denominations, including from the Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, and Sikh communities, as well as law enforcement.
MPAC looks forward to participating in the Faith-based Security Advisory Council by sharing the American Muslim perspective and narrative with the Department of Homeland Security, and ensuring that the concern of American Muslim communities around the nation are taken into account as the Department creates policies that protect Americans.