The right to practice religion free of fear is one of our nation’s most indelible rights. But over the last few years, the United States has experienced a significant increase in mass casualty attacks targeting houses of worship and their congregants. Following a string of attacks on synagogues, temples, churches, and mosques in 2019, the Department of Homeland Security launched a new task force to examine the threat posed by violent extremists, including those inspired by white supremacy ideologies.
As a co-chair of the task force, Brookings Institution President John R. Allen worked with leaders from the Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, and Christian faith communities to issue a new report that offers recommendations for how law enforcement and communities of faith can work together to prevent and mitigate mass casualty attacks.
On February 27, Governance Studies at Brookings hosted an event to examine the rising threat of targeted violence against communities of faith. Panelists discussed the findings of the task force’s report, including what is propelling the rise in violent extremist movements in the United States and how policymakers can help protect the rights and safety of vulnerable communities.
After the panel, speakers answered questions from the audience.
PanelistMary McCord Visiting Professor of Law - Georgetown University Law Center, Legal Director - Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and ProtectionFrederick M. Lawrence Distinguished Lecturer - Georgetown University Law Center, 10th Secretary and CEO - Phi Beta Kappa Society