ACLU of Georgia

Press Release: The ACLU of Georgia Calls Out Barrow County Sheriff’s Department for Rejecting the Applications of Muslims Asking to Attend Its Islamophobic Training

Media contact: Ana Maria Rosato

ATLANTA — The ACLU of Georgia sent another demand letter to the Barrow County Sheriff’s Department concerning tomorrow’s Islamophobic training titled “Islam in America” because the department “appear[s] to be unconstitutionally discriminating against [those] who may even attend this training, in violation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.”

Yesterday, nine concerned Georgia residents who follow the Muslim faith sought to register to attend this “training” to see for themselves what is being taught, but the Barrow County Sheriff rejected their applications. The Sheriff claimed that this event is open to houses of worship in Barrow County only. 


Yet an e-mail exchange between the Sheriff’s Office and the trainer, David Bores, produced in response to the ACLU of Georgia’s Open Records Request, revealed that three people from the First Baptist Church in Atlanta were allowed to register for the “training.”

“Anyway you cut it, the sheriff’s exclusionary policy appears to be a backdoor ban on people of the Muslim faith,” stated Sean J. Young, Legal Director of the ACLU of Georgia. “Blatant discrimination on the basis of religion violates the constitution and offends who we are as Americans. We urge the Sheriff to join the Georgia Association of the Chiefs of Police in rejecting this inflammatory and hateful training. Our brave men and women in uniform deserve better.”