Officer teaches Tampa Muslims how to be safe
THONOTOSASSA (FOX 13) - A law enforcement officer is teaching Muslims in the Tampa Bay area how to be safe if they are faced with violence.
"Everybody feels to a very extent safe, but in the last few days we have had a few incidents at the mosque," said Magda Saleh.
Around the country, Muslims have voiced their concerns for their safety after recent terror attacks in Paris and San Bernardino and a suggested temporary ban on Muslims entering the U.S. from Donald Trump.
"In general, people have been very kind and nice and respectful and there haven't been that many incidents that compare to the number of people we are,” said Saleh. “If it happens to one person it could happen again. We just want to be prepared.”
Nezar Hamze, a law enforcement officer and member of the Council for American Islamic Relations, is traveling to mosques giving talks on how to protect one another.
"People are scared. The Muslim community is extremely scared. People are being attacked. People are being killed," he said.
Hamze gave suggestions on how to safeguard their mosque, schools and homes.
He even demonstrated how fast an active shooter situation could unfold.
"From a safety perspective, a lot of our community members don't know what their rights are to protect themselves," Hamze continued.
He told the Islamic Society of New Tampa a tragedy can unfold at any time.
Men, women and children listened intently. For many, this isn't the first time they've had to worry.
"I have been in this country my whole life. We did it in 1979 with the Iran hostage crisis and after 9/11 we were targeted," said Saleh.
They hope others will wake up and realize what is going on.
"We have weathered them before and we will get through this one," she added.