Racial Profiling and Counter-terrorism

The International Human Rights Clinic has played a leading role in identifying, documenting, and denouncing the discriminatory impacts of counter-terrorism policies on Muslim, Arab, and South Asian (MASA) communities in the United States and abroad. Since September 11, 2001, the U.S. government has institutionalized a number of policies involving the discriminatory profiling of individuals who are deemed to be terrorism “suspects” on the basis of their race, religion, ethnicity, and/or national origin.  Our work is anchored in and continually informed by the needs and priorities of communities most affected by these discriminatory policies.

To date, the IHRC has produced five ground-breaking studies on the subject, analyzing these issues through the lens of international human rights law and giving voice to the grievances and concerns of affected communities.  Our reports have examined the problematic use of discriminatory profiling in the context of “shoot-to-kill” policies, immigration policies, and in criminal terrorism prosecutions.  We have filed FOIA requests seeking greater transparency around these issues, and have raised our concerns in international forums, such as the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the U.N. Human Rights Council.

The IHRC has also produced a widely-screened documentary film– “Americans on Hold”–that humanizes the impact of citizenship delays and border-crossing detentions and delays on MASA communities, and that has been used as an educational an advocacy tool in anti-profiling

Relevant Documents

Report: Targeted and Entrapped: Manufacturing the ‘Homegrown Threat’ in the United States (May 2011)

Report: Under the Radar: Muslims Deported, Detained, and Denied on Unsubstantiated Terrorism Allegations (May 2011)

Report: Ethnic Profiling in the European Union: Pervasive, Ineffective, and Discriminatory (2009)

Report: Americans on Hold: Profiling, Citizenship, and the ‘War on Terror’ (2007)

Report:  Irreversible Consequences: Racial Profiling and Lethal Force in the ‘War on Terror’ (2006)

Cover image of the 2007 report “Americans on Hold”, which formed the basis for the documentary by the same name, released in April 2010.

For more information on the “Americans on Hold” Documentary and Advocacy Project, click HERE.

To view the Documentary, click HERE.