On Wednesday, April 27, 2016 the American Human Rights Council (AHRC-USA) hosted and facilitated a community stakeholders’ meeting with the State of Michigan Department of Corrections leadership in Dearborn. Forty community and grass-roots leaders took part in a session of constructive dialogue and discussion with Ms. Heidi Washington, MDOC Director, regarding issues of common interest and concerns related to Michigan’s correctional system, inmates’ issues, and initiatives related to these pressing challenges facing the state as well as the nation.
Present leaders stressed on the importance of such open dialogue with the MDOC and the importance of the collaborative and effective efforts to explore and define practical ways to assist those inmates who are in dire need for assistance. Among several key issues discussed was the upcoming holy month of Ramadan (expected to begin possibly on June 7, 2016) for inmates of Muslim faith and the necessity of a MDOC standard and uniformed treatment due to the fasting. Ms. Washington was very receptive and open to addressing all concerns and issues presented. AHRC, the stakeholders and the MDOC expressed commitment to continuing this constructive engagement as all are eager to contribute to future solutions as the prisons and prisoners’ matters are of common interest.
“AHRC is very committed to advancing this constructive engagement with the MDOC and all related agencies to help address these common challenges,” said Imad Hamad AHRC Executive Director. “This nation behind bars merits all collaborative efforts,” continued Hamad.
“We are pleased that AHRC hosted and facilitated such an open and constructive discussion with the MDOC Director addressing one of the most pressing challenges facing our society. We are thankful to Director Washington for being receptive and open to dialogue,” said Dr. Opada Alzohaili, AHRC President.