These are difficult times for the Iranian people. Repression and violence continue with impunity. Much of the world’s attention, which was focused on Iranian protesters for so long, has now drifted away.
For many in Iran, it seems like they are alone.
But NIAC refuses to allow the Iranian people to be forgotten.
That is why we are issuing a challenge to the entire Iranian-American community to stand up and urge the American public, Congress, and the Obama Administration to stand with the Iranian people.
Mehmoonak Action Gatherings are being organized across the country
Seven steps YOU can take to Stand With the Iranian People:
1) Send a message directly to your Representative: The first step is to tell your Representative to Stand With the Iranian People! The Stand With the Iranian People Act and the Iranian Digital Empowerment Act are two historic pieces of legislation that remove sanctions that punish innocent Iranians.
2) Send a message to President Obama: Next, urge the President to fix the single-entry only visa policy for Iranian students in the US. Iranian students cannot visit their families, attend international conferences, or travel abroad for the entire duration of their studies in the US without losing their visa and jeopardizing their education.
3) Organize a Mehmoonak: You've written your Representative and the President, now it's your chance to become a leader in your community by getting ten to fifteen of your friends and family to write their Representative as well. NIAC will give you all the tools you need to host a Mehmoonak--a small gathering where your friends and neighbor can meet, debate and take action on important issues facing the Iranian-American community.
4) Attend a Town Hall: Town halls are a great opportunity to communicate directly with your elected officials. You can find out if your Representative is holding a town hall on their website. For some pointers, check out NIAC's Guide to Attending a Town Hall.
5) Write a letter to the editor or an op-ed: It's easier than ever to make your voice heard in your community using NIAC's brand new letter to the editor tool. For help with your letter or op-ed, feel free to contact us at (202)386-6325.
6) Call your Representative: Now it's time to follow up on the letter you sent by calling your Represenative and telling them to support the Stand With the Iranian People Act and the Iranian Digital Empowerment Act.
7) Meet with your Representative: The final step is to meet your Representative in person to tell them how important it is to stand with the Iranian people. NIAC is happy to help you arrange a meeting, either at your Representative's office in Washington, DC, or in your hometown. Email us to get started.
This year will be extremely important for determining the future of Iran and the Iranian people. So please stand up and join the challenge today.
|Iranian Americans take part in the first Iranian American Townhall featuring Rep. Jim Moran|
NIAC recently unveiled a brand-new tool for Iranian Americans to take action--the mehmoonak. To date, NIAC members have hosted mehmoonaks in four Congressional districts, where they organized letter-writing campaigns to their elected representatives, making a tremendous impact. To date, NIAC members have hosted mehmoonaks in four Congressional districts, where they organized letter-writing campaigns to their elected representatives urging them to support the Stand With the Iranian People Act (SWIPA).
A coalition of humanitarian relief and human rights organizations called on the U.S. government today to lift restrictions that prevent American non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from undertaking humanitarian projects in Iran.
In a letter sent to Congress, the State Department and the Treasury Department, the coalition expressed concern that U.S. Iran policy undermines legitimate humanitarian efforts, unnecessarily restricting American NGOs while punishing innocent Iranians. The letter’s cosigners are comprised of non-profit organizations that have worked, or sought to work, in Iran for human rights and humanitarian purposes.
The event, held in McLean, VA, included opening remarks by NIAC member Forough Yazdani who thanked Rep. Moran for his countless efforts in support of the Iranian-American community in Congress. Among those key efforts was his introduction of the Iranian Digital Empowerment Act (H.R. 4301), which supports Iranians’ access to information and communication tools online. “Previously, US sanctions stood in the way of companies like Google and Microsoft providing vital tools to the Iranian people over the Internet,” Yazdani said. “Because of Rep. Moran, those backwards sanctions have now been lifted.”