Latino Muslims Receive More Attention and Support

September 25, 2002

Source: The Associated Press

On September 25, 2002 The Associated Press reported that "where they once were an unrecognized 'other' in demographic studies of American Muslim communities, the number of Hispanic converts to Islam is growing... 'This phenomenon is quite old,' said Sheikh Zoubir Bouchikhi, Imam of the Islamic Society of Greater Houston's Southeast mosque. 'It's not only in Houston [TX] but also all over the United States,' he said. 'In the last five years we have an increase in the number of people embracing Islam: Latinos.' A study of mosques in the United States, published in 2001, indicated that about 6 percent of American converts to Islam are Hispanic, said Ihsan Bagby, an author of the report and associate professor of Islamic studies at the University of Kentucky. About 27 percent of American converts are white, 64 percent are African-American and 3 percent are a mixture of other backgrounds, according to The Mosque in America: A National Portrait."