As we prepared for last year's Ramadan, two young deaf men came by our Islamic Center at New York University (ICNYU).
They told me how many deaf Muslims praying in congregation end up just standing and following the motions, unable to hear any of the vocalized invocations and recitation of the Qur'an that are meant to transform our hearts in the month of Ramadan. They asked if it would be religiously permissible to use sign language when leading a prayer, so that those who could not hear would be able to be more
It was honestly something I had never thought about, which was alarming to me. It opened my eyes to the many ways in which our religious and community spaces fail to be inclusive and accessible to the estimated 600,000 American Muslims living with disabilities.
This is why I was so grateful to learn that American Muslim Health Professionals (AMHP) is filling this void with programs like EnabledMuslim, which offers a support network and resources for individuals like the young deaf gentlemen I met.
AMHP is also tackling a number of other serious needs that I have encountered firsthand as an imam and chaplain. Their mental health initiatives and campaign for access to affordable health care coverageare working to improve the well-being of the most underserved members of our community.
With prayers for peace and health, was-salaam 'alaykum,
Check out #AccessibleRamadan on Twitter and join EnabledMuslim and SMILE's campaign asking masjid leadership to improve accessibility.
Imam Khalid Latif
University Chaplain,Global Spiritual Life at NYU Executive Director, The Islamic Center at NYU Senior Fellow & Co-Founder,Of Many Institute for Multifaith Leadership Adjunct Assistant Professor,NYU Wagner
In 1965, Medicare was established for the elderly andMedicaid for low-income adults, children, pregnant women, and people with disabilities.
As part of the 50th anniversary celebration for these programs, the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is collecting stories of how Medicare and Medicaid have made a difference for everyday Americans. CMS would like Muslim Americans to participate in this initiative by sharing their stories.
Has one of Medicareâ€™s many preventive benefits helped detect cancer at an early stage for you or a parent?
Have rehabilitation services helped you get stronger and return to regular activity after surgery?
Has Medicaid helped you or your children get treatment for an illness?
AMHP is seeking dedicated and committed volunteers to take part in the upcoming Atlanta & Philadelphia networking events. Please reach out to AMHP Program Coordinator, Sarah Dar, at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and to sign up.
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