March 10, 2020 | From Middle East Eye
The US city of Paterson, New Jersey, has backed an ordinance to allow the adhan, the Muslim call to prayer, to be broadcast over loudspeakers.
Under the new measure, which still has to go through two public hearings before being implemented, the adhan would be exempt from the city’s noise control ordinance and allowed to be broadcast outside every day between 6am and 10pm.
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The resolution was approved by council members on Tuesday by a vote of 7-0, with two members abstaining.
“We applaud Paterson officials for taking this admirable step toward inclusion, and encourage them to pass the proposed ordinance,” said Salaedin Maksut, executive director of the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). . . .
“Their open-mindedness to such laws is a concrete demonstration of respect and mutual understanding between the residents of our rich and diverse communities.”
Paterson has approximately 30,000 Muslim residents, along with more than 15 mosques scattered across the area.
Maksut compared the sounds made from the Muslim call to prayer to church bells, which are allowed to be broadcast in communities all across the United States.