A PSA campaign in Boston aims to urge bystanders to address Islamophobia. Image courtesy of the city of Boston

Boston launches poster campaign to combat Islamophobia

BOSTON (AP) — Boston has launched a new public service campaign to fight Islamophobia by offering the public ways to address aggression toward others because of their appearance or beliefs.

The campaign launched Monday involves 50 posters that provide a step-by-step guide to handling when someone is being harassed. They will be posted on bus stop benches and other public places around the city.

[ad number=“1”]

Titled "What to do if you are witnessing Islamophobic harassment," the posters encourage people to engage with the person who is being targeted and to draw attention away from the harasser.

A PSA campaign in Boston aims to urge bystanders to address Islamophobia. Image courtesy of the city of Boston

The technique is called "noncomplementary behavior" and is intended to disempower an aggressive person by countering the aggressor's expectations.

"These posters are one tool we have to send the message that all are welcome in Boston," Mayor Marty Walsh said. "Education is key to fighting intolerance, and these posters share a simple strategy for engaging with those around you."

The city's Islamic community lauded the campaign.

"We encourage all of our fellow Bostonians to apply the approach in these posters to anyone targeted — whether Muslim, Latino or otherwise," said Suzan El-Rayess, civic engagement director at the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center.

San Francisco has a similar campaign. Thea Colman, whose sister had worked with San Francisco's Bay Area Rapid Transit to have posters installed throughout that system, approached Walsh's office.

The posters, designed by French artist Maeril, will stay up for six months.

[ad number=“2”]


  1. Will they also be putting up posters discouraging Muslims from bombing the Boston Marathon again?

  2. Again with blaming all Muslims for the violence of a minority? In the absence of reason and common sense, you get ignorance and bigotry. I would guess the majority harassed are women, as suggested by the posters, because they seldom fight back – a coward’s choice.

  3. Perhaps you ought to spend a week or two in Saudi Arabia where it is common for homo’s to be thrown from rooftops, while women are physically, ritually and sexually abused as a lifestyle. Until Americans become aware of the truth behind the façade of Islamic culture they will continue to make excuses for liars and deceivers.

  4. I don’t care one iota for Islam or most of its teachings. But you are trying to use it to justify bullying individual Muslims, as this article talks about. Two separate issues.

  5. Sure, why not? Right after they put signs Catholic churches about not raping kids and assassinating doctors.

  6. Have you seen “The Scarlet Letter”?

  7. I do not see where Jeff blamed all Muslims for anything. He mentioned the marathon bombing, but that was a few thousand episodes of Islamic violence ago. Boston, Manchester, Orlando, etc happen everyday, but usually in Africa, the Middle East, or Asia, so they are not front page news in the west. Islam is simply an endemically violent political ideology. Individual Muslims should not be harassed (although I think if the T wanted to do an anti-harassment campaign, they should have avoided identity politics and encouraged people to speak up regardless of the target), but the minority of Koran believers who want to do violence or support those who do is not inconsequential. Even if our nice Muslim coworkers are horrified by Islamic violence, they are either unwilling or unable to stop it. You should perhaps allow people to express their legitimate concerns about this without trying to shut down the conversation.

  8. I’m not justifying anything. I simply replied to your response to Jeff pointing out the obvious, Islam is a religion based upon lies and deceit.

    Jeff’s point is a good one…why put up posters which highlight violence toward one group when violence is already outlawed by our state a federal laws? Perhaps if we got back to teaching our children and immigrants about the history of our nation and our Constitution, we wouldn’t have to remind them not to commit violence against each other.

  9. No, but I read the book, and I don’t recall it having anything to do with Muslims. Are you insinuating that Muslims are adulterers?

    If it counts, I have seen the Scarlet Pumpernickel.

  10. No, it doesn’t count. “The Scarlet Letter” concerns, among other items, adultery by a Christian minister. Anyone whining about what some Muslims did or do is deflecting. You go on and on about the sins of Muslims, but conveniently sidestep those in your own back yard.

  11. Hey Kangaroo….first of all you know nothing about me and are insinuating things you know even less about. Second had you ever learned any reading comprehension skills you’d understand my comments were in gest. Third, the whole point of this comment string which you are ranting against was why single out bullying against Muslims when it happens to everyone?

    Do us all a favor and keep your comments focused upon the story not those who are commenting about it. In other words…You stay in your backyard and I’ll stay in mine.

  12. I know something about you, and it isn’t a nice thing at all.

    “Perhaps you ought to spend a week or two in Saudi Arabia where it is common for homo’s to be thrown from rooftops” Actually, that would be Islamic state. “Homo’s” are imprisoned or executed by other means in Saudi Arabia.
    But your inability to distinguish facts is not the point. The use of the word “homo’s” is the point. The point is ignorance of the fact that so called Christians all over the world, including our bestest country in the world, frequently call for the deaths, or at least the imprisonment, of gay people. The point is that your holy book calls for the murder of gay men, and people posting on these very pages are happy to make that exact citation.

  13. Perhaps if our political parties started publicly shaming bigots fore being bigots we might actually get somewhere.

  14. What you think you know about me is exactly the problem. You know nothing about me, only what you assume from less than 100 words shared upon this website. If you believe you can accurately estimate the worth of a human from so little, then I’ll waste no more time with you.

    I can see by your low-level of “expertise” that you have a problem with the word Homo? Maybe that is where you ought to begin your studies. It is an abbreviation for the medical term “homosexual”, meaning “a tendency to direct sexual desire toward another of the same sex.”

    As for your lies about Saudi Arabia…tell it to the victims of 9-11. Your ignorance about Islam and Saudi Arabia are obvious to anyone who spend more than 10 minutes per day reading about world news from sources other than MSM.

    Do me a favor…go back to sleep! Your couch is calling you.

  15. How about you stop shaming yourself and do something productive for our society.

  16. I didn’t estimate your worth as a human being. That would be you, projecting about me, as so many hyper conservatives and hyper religious do all the time when it comes to their perceived enemies.

    Yes, you are correct about the derivation of the word. But Homo is a slur. It has always been a slur, and it is never, with one exception, used by anyone when referring to gay people unless it is used as slur. the only time it is not used as a slur is when gay people use it ironically and self referentially.

    Lies about Saudi Arabia? No, I don’t think so. We are in agreement that it is a religious hell hole. We are even in agreement that they were the primary group behind 9/11. But I was not talking about any of that.

    I don’t do favors.

  17. I do. I fight homobigotry and religious bigotry. I promote freedom of religion and separation of church and state.
    What do you do besides insult people on the internet?

  18. “I know something about you, and it isn’t a nice thing at all.” Your words not mine.

    You may call it a slur… I and many others including the AMA as well as many homos call it a medical definition. It is far more descriptive than “Gay”, a term which means happy…I assure you, knowing a vast array of older homo’s, they are anything but happy…in fact their population has more problems than any other segment of society. Grow up and live with the facts…or see if you can change them…but I warn you…facts are stubborn things.

    As for SA….you need to start reading something other than MSM lies.
    Don’t bother replying…I’m done with you.

  19. If you think you fight anything by your lame assessments and contrived responses on a website with which you seldom agree about anything …than you are wasting your time as well as others.

    I suggest you find a job or get a productive hobby.

  20. How about signs warning us against Christian right wing and racist terrorists. Lord knows there have been lots of them!

    Hurrah Boston! What a super effort to model loving our neighbors as ourselves.

  21. Homos? (No apostrophe.) That tells a lot about you. Praying for you.

  22. Sounds like a campaign to Christianize the Islamic world (loving our neighbors as ourselves) would be a lot more useful. That might have an ameliorating effect on Islam’s endemic violence. You should really look into Islam’s doctrinal supremacism and “otherizing” at some point. Until then, please stick to commenting on reality TV and stop derailing important conversations with inanities.

Leave a Comment