The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) is applauding the Jersey City Council for appointing Yousef Saleh as their Ward D representative yesterday – the first Muslim councilman in city history.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“With the appointment of Yousef Saleh, Jersey City’s first Muslim councilman, the city council has taken clear steps toward religious inclusion, embracing the richness, and diversity of New Jersey’s second most populous city,” CAIR-NJ Executive Director Selaedin Maksut said in a statement.
“With the rise of Islamophobia, it is inspiring to see Jersey City take the necessary steps to expand the diversity of its council with the appointment of Yousef Saleh, a first generation American-Muslim who was born, raised, and still lives in the Jersey City Heights section, Ward D.”
CAIR-NJ is the country’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization.
Their mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
Saleh was appointed to succeed the late Michael Yun, who died from COVID-19 complications on April 6th, at a special meeting yesterday by a vote of 6-2 during a sometimes contentions meeting, as HCV first reported.
Following his appointment, the Yun family offered Saleh a lengthy congratulatory message.
Kalimah Ahmad, now a municipal judge, was the first Muslim councilwoman in Jersey City, appointed under the Mayor Jerramiah Healy administration in February 2011.
Editor’s note: This story was updated with new information.