Covering Up Sexual Abuse

Nihad Awad ignored warnings from victims of sexual harassment in his organization and turned a blind eye for years.

Former female staffers who were victims of sexual abuse revealed publicly that the organization’s leadership including Nihad Awad were well aware of instances of sexual abuse by male staffers. The victims’ complaints fell on deaf ears. They further revealed that no disciplinary action was taken to against abusers like CAIR Florida’s former chapter head Hassan Shibly. In fact, Shibly resigned after the abuse was revealed in a National Public Radio story published in 2021. 

“..Laila Abdelaziz, who worked under Shibly at the CAIR Florida chapter, said she resigned in 2016 in part because Shibly sexually harassed her. She said she believes CAIR leaders have failed to adequately address the situation

“The NPR report documented clear examples of abuse by Shibly and that CAIR’s national leadership was well aware of them yet never took disciplinary action. In fact, when Shibly finally resigned, Nihad Awad and CAIR’s National leadership wished him well. 

Sadly, the problem is not limited to Hassan Shibly alone, but seems to be much more spread inside the organization:

“A Southern California-based religious scholar, Aslam Abdullah, said that women mistrust that CAIR will handle their claims seriously. He said numerous women have come to him with what he regards as credible allegations of harassment, sexual misconduct or unfair treatment against senior men within CAIR or CAIR affiliates. These women don’t believe that CAIR National’s investigation will be fair and have refused to cooperate, he said…”