Commissioner Lesley Briones hosted Harris County Precinct 4's first Iftar event Tuesday, April 11 in recognition of this holy month of Ramadan. About 80 people gathered inside Bayland Community Center to hear from local officials and community leaders about what this holy month of celebration and reflection means to them.
“The diversity of Precinct 4 is its biggest strength, and I am proud to represent a region that has the largest concentration of Muslims in the State of Texas and in the Southern U.S. region,” Commissioner Lesley Briones said during the event. “Yet, it is not enough for us to be the most diverse county – we must also be the most inclusive. Inclusivity means that events like tonight are celebrated and become annual traditions.”
“It means we, as the county government, must listen to better understand your needs as Muslim-Americans and recognize that the community is not a monolith. It means ensuring you have a seat at the table and expanding our Precinct 4 team to be more reflective of who we represent. And most of all, it means that we must continue to learn from each other, unite, and drive our community forward—together.”
A panel discussion led by Judge Rabeea Collier focused on the role Ramadan plays in the life of Muslims. Panelist and speakers included:
· Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo
· Judge Brittanye Morris, 333rd Civil Court
· Judge Shannon Baldwin, Harris County Court at Law No. 4
· Council Member Letitia Plummer,
· Sima Ladjevardian (Regional Director for the Department of Health and Human Services)
· Imam Omar Merchant
· Bibi Khan (An-Nisa Hope Center)
· William White (CAIR Houston)
· Faizan Atiq (ISGH of Houston)
· Mustafa Tameez (board member, Rise AAPI)
“What I find so beautiful about Ramadan and the Muslim community is the deep commitment to service that is central to the faith. I share that commitment and hope we can unite in service of our community.” Briones said.
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About Harris County Precinct 4: Precinct 4 is one of four precincts located in Harris County, Texas and boasts a population of more than 1.2 million people. Precinct 4 maintains 1,423 miles of roads and nearly 4 miles of bridges, eight community centers with more than 700,000 visitors annually, and 54 parks, with 13,455 acres of greenspace.