The incident of 9/11 undoubtedly changed the world in irrevocable ways. Despite being completely uninvolved in anything to do with 9/11, Sikhs have been one of the most affected groups in the aftermath of the tragic events.
Post 9/11, a specific image of what a terrorist looks like became embedded in the psyche of much of the Western world. This has seen Sikhs become victims of abuse, attacks and even murder.
Many followers of the Sikh faith wear turbans and keep their hair uncut, in adherence to the teachings of the Sikh Gurus. This means men will often have beards and turbans, whilst women may also wear a turban or keep their heads covered with a shawl. The physical identity of the Sikh often stands out in Western countries, even more so than other minority groups. This has resulted in Sikhs suffering from what can only be described as Islamophobic abuse all over the world and most notably in the USA. The severity of the situation can be seen in the fact that the first post 9/11 hate crime victim to be killed was a Sikh, whilst as recently as 2012 a man invaded a Sikh temple and randomly started shooting worshippers, killing six people.
This issue is yet to be recognised by any government organisation. There is no country where attacks on Sikhs are collated separately by authorities, nor has there been any specific campaigns created by government agencies to help educate the public on who Sikhs are. However, Sikh groups are tackling this issue.
Below you can find articles on hate crimes against Sikhs and also discussion on how Sikhs are looking to tackle the problem. For more information or to speak to someone involved in campaigns against Sikh Hate Crime, contact Sikh PA on Media@SikhPA.com.