Today, the Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) received a statement from M. Khurram Baig, the attorney for Ms. Sahar Sabet, that contrary to other reports, an incident of discrimination did take place at the Apple Store in Georgia on June 14, 2012. Given this new information, PAAIA strongly and unequivocally calls on Apple to take immediate steps to cease any instances where members of the Iranian American public are inappropriately targeted for discrimination based on their language or national heritage. Iranian Americans residing in the United States have the unalienable right to equal treatment (and freedom from unfair treatment or discrimination) under the laws of this country. PAAIA has a zero tolerance policy against discrimination or racial profiling of Iranian Americans. We will speak out and defend our community interests under such circumstances and take all necessary steps and actions.
We have been in communication with government officials regarding this issue and will increase the intensity with which we will pursue this matter, continuing our multi-pronged approach to addressing this case. We have been actively involved in drafting and are co-signors to a letter, signed by numerous Iranian American organizations, being submitted to the CEO of Apple voicing our concerns regarding the company’s policy related to US Embargo laws and any act of discrimination against an Iranian American. The letter communicates our recommendation to Apple to adopt standardized practices that would apply to every customer at the time of purchase, and ensure the company’s compliance with the law. Finally, realizing that we are our own best advocates, we will also incorporate information about instances such as these in our regular presentations on the US Sanctions throughout the country.
PAAIA is fully prepared to fight for the rights of our community and its members. We have done this previously on numerous occasions. Due to PAAIA’s efforts, the professional networking website LinkedIn placed Iran back on their education drop-down menu from where it had been removed and the American Values Network (AVN) dropped an anti-oil ad campaign that targeted Iran in favor of a new concept that promotes clean energy but shields innocent Iranians and Iranian Americans from a bad image. In 2012, PAAIA strongly protested an anti-Iranian poster posted by a restaurant owner in Katy, Texas. We will continue be an advocate for our community if an issue of discrimination occurs against any Iranian American.
We call on any other Iranian Americans who may have experienced discrimination in buying Apple products because of their nationality, language, or ethnic background to contact us with all relevant information at firstname.lastname@example.org.