jaswinder – UNITED SIKHS Blog https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog Recognize The Human Race As One Tue, 28 Nov 2017 14:31:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Attention:​Venue Change for Senate Hearing on Hate Crimes on September 19th https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/2012/09/attention%e2%80%8bvenue-change-for-senate-hearing-on-hate-crimes-on-september-19th/ Wed, 19 Sep 2012 12:12:52 +0000 http://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/?p=1655 Community Update
Washington DC, DC: The Senate Judiciary Hearing on Hate Crimes and Domestic Extremism is today,  Wednesday, September 19th at 2:30 pm (Hart Senate Office Building, Room 216 – Please note the location change). 

Even though the hearing is today, there are still many ways that your organization can show its support as well as resources to assist you.

1.       Attend the hearing and post-hearing press conference:  We need to pack the hearing room to emphasize the importance of these issues to all communities.  Also, a press conference will be held at approximately 4:30pm (immediately after the hearing) outside of the hearing room featuring allies supporting the hearing.  Please attend and encourage colleagues, local affiliates, and constituents to attend!  If you plan to attend, please fill out this RSVP form created by the Sikh Coalition so that we can get a sense of the number of people attending and the necessary space required.  If you cannot attend, you can also stream it here.

2.       Issue a press release or write an op-ed.  Press releases are of the utmost importance in order to spread the word regarding this hearing nationally and should be issued the Wednesday morning (tomorrow).  Additionally, op-eds are extremely helpful in making the public aware of the hearing and the importance of this hearing to your communities.  We encourage organizations to submit op-eds of no longer than 700 words to online media in order to have them published in a timely fashion.

  3.       Tweet during the hearing:  The hashtag is #antihate if you or your organization wishes to tweet.  Please tweet frequently!

4.       Submit an organizational statement for the record:  The record remains open for a week after the hearing and organizations can still submit statements of the record until that time (though they will not be referenced during Wednesday’s hearing).   (Note:  Please see below for information from the ACLU on messaging regarding “domestic extremism.”) . All statements must be emailed to Stephanie Trifone at stephanie_trifone@judiciary-dem.senate.gov by Wednesday, September 26th at 5 p.m. EDT / 4 p.m. CDT / 3 p.m. PDT.  Feel free to bcc law-usa@unitedsikhs.org and info@saalt.org  when submitting your statement.

*Message from the ACLU:  Though the title of the hearing includes the phrase “domestic extremism,” there are concerns regarding this phrase and the fundamental First Amendment issues it raises. Primarily, the concern is that using the language “domestic extremism” rather than “violent extremists” puts the focus on ideas the government considers extreme, rather than illegal action taken by individuals.   The ACLU and other First Amendment advocacy groups worked with the Homeland Security Committees back in 2007 when “domestic radicalization” was their preferred euphemism and persuaded them to instead use “violent extremism,” which has become the common phraseology.  While this was not the preferred outcome (the preference was “violent extremists” because the “ism” still suggests a focus on ideology rather than action), it was successful in that the government acknowledged that the focus should be on violence rather than ideas.  The government has used the radicalization theory and the pursuit of “extremism” as a justification for investigating and monitoring both religious communities and political activists.  Peaceful advocacy organizations of all types have been subjected to the same sorts of over-aggressive enforcement tactics (ubiquitous surveillance, aggressive informants, sting operations, etc.) as have minority religious communities, and there is a risk of alienating them based on the inadvertent suggestion that the government can target them for their ideas and activism.  The ACLU urges the use of the term “violent extremist” so that law enforcement focuses on violent actions and the people who commit them, rather than ideas that the government may consider outside of the norm.  In formulating your testimony and statements for the record, please consider your use of language and messaging for your statement of the record.  For more information, please contact Mike German at mgerman@dcaclu.org or Devon Chaffee at dchaffee@dcaclu.org.

HEALTH FAIR HELD IN QUEENS, NEW YORK https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/2012/03/health-fair-held-in-queens-new-york/ https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/2012/03/health-fair-held-in-queens-new-york/#comments Mon, 26 Mar 2012 15:36:41 +0000 http://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/?p=1227 http://www.unitedsikhs.org/Health_fair_Queens.htm

  July 09, 2004                                                                                                   25th Harh, 536 Nanakshahi



 Queens, New York – UNITED SIKHS organized a Health Fair at Gurdwara Makan Shah Lobhana (113-10 101 Ave, Richmond Hill, New York 11419) on June 20, 2004, in which variety of health and safety information was made available to the attending public. In addition, the Health Fair invited speakers to give their views on Health and Nutrition, Early detection of Cancer, Women’s Health, Domestic Violence and Alcohol Abuse as well as how to manage medical emergencies. A Blood Donation Drive was also arranged as part of the Fair on the special request of Long Island Blood Center to meet the blood shortage in the tri-state area.


The Fair was made possible with the active participation of the Queens Hospital Center, St. Mary’s Hospital of Brooklyn, Health First, Special Commission of Domestic Violence and volunteer Sikh physicians. The physicians spoke on various medical issues and answered questions that the attending public had. The participating organizations set up their booths and provided information on free medical insurance, HIV counseling/education, blood screening, asthma education and screening, diabetes screening and a dental checkup. The response to the Health Fair was tremendous, and was attended by more than a thousand people. In anticipation of the event, people lined up for free medical check-ups even before the opening of the Health Fair. Visitors to the Health Fair were tested for their sugar level, and some were found to have a count of more than 200 mg/dL. (normal ranges are 70-110 mg/dL.) and were recommended to see a physician immediately. A granthi (Sikh clergyman) from India was sent to the emergency room, as his blood sugar count was 500.

The active participation of the physicians who volunteered and interacted with the public giving valuable advice and helpful information was truly an inspiration. Dr Amritpal Kaur’s lecture on Health and Nutrition not only identified the pitfalls in the typical Punjabi diet but also suggested substitute healthier foods. She had made a special effort to translate her charts in Punjabi and had an interactive session with the attending public. The second lecture was delivered by Dr. Kiranjeet Kaur, regarding the detection of breast cancer, A brochure entitled “Signs, Symptoms, Detection and Treatment”, showing how to do a breast self-examination for cancer, was given out and emphasis was laid on yearly physician checkup, including X-ray and Mammogram, particularly for women over the age of 40.


Dr. Grover talked about domestic violence and alcohol abuse. Noting that the majority of the domestic violence in communities goes unreported, with the majority of the victims being women, Dr. Grover conveyed that there are many organizations that are involved in assisting the victims of domestic violence. In the Punjab (where the vast majority of the attendees originate from), domestic violence is a prevalent problem and Punjabi immigrants who come to the U.S. do not necessarily shed this criminal behavior once here. The victim needs to know that there is help available for her to escape this cycle of domestic abuse, and Dr. Grover hoped that her presentation would be the beginning of relief for potential victims. Dr. Suber Singh gave a lecture on HIV prevention and education, as well as basic CPR training. He also gave his views on how to manage medical emergencies and how to make the most effective use of dialing 911. This was well received by the public.


The Blood drive was also a marvelous success, as the donations by the attendees was more than originally anticipated. The attendees also generously donated plasma for bone marrow transplantation. 


Because of the tremendous attendance, the Fair extended beyond its normal closing time, as there were still a number of people seeking medical services and advice.  UNITED SIKHS has a long tradition of caring for the underserved and this Fair was another jewel in its crown. This Health Fair was a step to complete the vision of a healthy world where the common and not so privileged get health services free of cost.  The large number of attendees and the Sikh community being at a high risk of heart related problems and diabetes only reinforced the apparent need for such events to be held in the future with more frequency.



UNITED SIKHS would like to the New York Office of Minority Health Region II for providing funds for the printing of brochures and posters.






Attendees being educated on medical issues facing the community.





Generous attendees donating blood and plasma to help save a life.




Scene outside of the Health Fair – children and adults welcome!




Education of the Public – a key to a healthy community.




For more information on the Right to Turban campaign, please link to:



Our Mission

To transform underprivileged and minority communities and individuals into informed and vibrant members of society through civic, educational and personal development programs, by fostering active participation in social and economic activity. UNITED SIKHS is also an avenue for networking between like-minded organisations to establish and nurture meaningful projects and dialogues – whether social, cultural or political- to promote harmony, understanding and reciprocity in our villages, towns and cities. UNITED SIKHS is a coalition of organisations and individuals, who share a common vision based on the belief that there is no greater endeavor than to serve, empower and uplift fellow beings. The core of our philosophy is an unwavering commitment to civic service and social progress on behalf of the common good. Accordingly, UNITED SIKHS has sought to fulfill its mission not only by informing, educating and uplifting fellow beings but also by participating in cross-cultural and political exchanges to ensure that the promises and benefits of democracy are realized by all. We at UNITED SIKHS believe that the development of enlightened and progressive societies can be made possible by socially conscious groups of people who make a commitment to develop and direct human potential. Our work, efforts and achievements stand as a testament to our faith in this vision.

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Cutting along the lines-Selfless Saturdays https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/2009/07/cutting-along-the-lines/ https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/2009/07/cutting-along-the-lines/#comments Mon, 13 Jul 2009 01:47:26 +0000 http://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/?p=377 Manhattan, New York, 11th July 2009: On July 11th the Selfless Saturdays group decided to help out at P.S. 124 in Chinatown. Kids (much like me) need visual tools to help them grasp math concepts like fractions so the teachers needed various shapes cut out of construction paper. That’s where this group came into the picture!

We cut triangles, hexagons, rhombi (who said adults can’t learn anything from second graders?), squares and other shapes which we still do not the know the names of. All in a days work!

If you would like to join for next month’s community seva event, email us at SelflessSaturday@unitedsikhs.org


Alice, the principle of P.S. 124, sent the following thank you note:

“..thanks again for recruiting the volunteers today and helping us to make a big dent in getting the pattern blocks cut as well as unpacking the supplies and the tomato plants staked. ..”

Some kids joined to show us the ropes of paper cutting.  There was some "small hand envy" in the room for sure.

Some kids joined to show us the ropes of paper cutting. There was some "small hand envy" in the room for sure.

1-million-one, 1-million-2, 1-million-3.  How many triangles did we need again?

1-million-one, 1-million-2, 1-million-3. Wait, how many triangles did we need again?

Joga decided to go for the big boy tools.

Joga decided to go for the big boy tools. We were un-impressed ;p

Assembly Line

Some of us had complicated methods for cutting, others stuck to the basics. Jokes about our product were never ending.

Finishing the last few (hundred) triangles

Finishing the last few (hundred) triangles

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What a colorful world https://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/2009/05/what-a-colorful-world/ Sun, 17 May 2009 21:14:28 +0000 http://www.unitedsikhs.org/blog/?p=251 On May 16th, the Selfless Saturdays volunteers went to Middle School 301 and picked up some paintbrushes and rollers and went to work.

We got there around 10:30am and helped out till around 1:30pm

SS May MS301

MS301 in the Bronx

Tools for the job

Tools for the job


The Team (minus a few taking photos)

The Team (minus a few taking photos)

On May 16th, the Selfless Saturdays volunteers went to Middle School 301 and picked up some paintbrushes and rollers and went to work. We got there around 10:30am and helped out till around 1:30pm. Many in our community do this for a living but we joined to have some fun and spend some time with youngsters.

For those of us who didn’t know what we were doing, we had teachers showing us the ropes.

Thanks to all the volunteers for helping out. We hope to see you at future events.

If you’d like to join email us at SelflessSaturday@unitedsikhs.org!

One volunteer learning from another

One volunteer learning from another

"I think little man needs the ladder more than you do"

"I think little man needs the ladder more than you do"

"Don't trip, don't trip, don't trip"

"Don't trip, don't trip, don't trip"