Voices in Focus: Jewish Students Stand With Muslim Peers

The Veranda club, on 7th Avenue in the West Village, must compensate a group of former employees who allege labor violations. (Photo by Humberto Arellano / EDLP)

Here’s what caught our attention in the ethnic and community media today:

* The Jewish Daily Forward reports that Jewish student groups at several universities have voiced solidarity with their Muslim classmates in the wake of revelations that the New York Police Department spied on Muslim student associations.

“The idea of religious students from any religion being surveilled I think was offensive to the [Jewish] students,” said Rabbi Mike Uram, Hillel director at the University of Pennsylvania.

The Forward goes on to note, “In a sign of a possible generational divide, most Jewish communal leaders, even some who work in coalitions with Muslim groups, defended the police effort.”

* The Veranda club in the West Village must pay a group of mostly Mexican former employees $200,000 in a judgment against the club for exploiting their employees and retaliating against those who rebelled, El Diario reported.

Marco Jacal, 42, who has a wife and three children living in Mexico City and depend on his salary, lost his job after complaining that he didn’t receive the minimum wage or overtime pay, and also because he said the manager took a large portion of the tips that should have gone to him and his companions.

“I’m thrilled that justice has been served,” said Jackal. “I lost my job, but in the end it was worthwhile.”

* A”highly placed” executive with Morgan Stanley quarreled with a New York City taxi driver over the fare to his $3.6 million home in Darien, Conn., then stabbed the driver while yelling racial slurs, Gothamist reported.

William Bryan Jennings, 47,  was charged with assault, theft of services and second-degree intimidation based on race or bigotry, The Stamford Advocate reported. The driver was of Middle Eastern descent, according to the Advocate.

* Colorlines brought us the story of a 37-year-old mother who was arrested by the Los Angeles Police and then deported after trespassing during a protest at the foreclosed home she used to live in. The woman’s husband said that the family had filed for bankruptcy and had been in a “fight” with Bank of America over the home.

Cardenas’ 19-month old daughter isn’t sleeping well at night since her mother was deported. “She was waking up every hour because she’s used to sleeping with her mother,” a member of the family told Estrella-TV.

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