The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) has noted a recent wave of reports from across the country indicating that FBI agents are contacting Arab and Muslim Americans, including citizens, for what has been described as voluntary interviews. ADC would like to remind members of the Arab, Muslim, and Arab-American communities that equal protection and due process rights are afforded to everyone, including non-citizens, in the United States.
Unlike previous initiatives, the FBI has not communicated to ADC any plans to conduct such interviews. ADC urges anyone who is contacted by the FBI to contact the ADC Legal Department and provide details of the incident by calling (202) 244-2990, sending a fax to (202) 244-3196, or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may contact the local San Francisco ADC office at (415) 861-7444, or via email at email@example.com
Upon request, ADC will do its best to provide third party observers, in cases where potential interviewees would want such additional safeguards. Additional useful "Know Your Rights" information can be found on the ADC website at: http://www.adc.org/.
ADC offers the following guidelines to anyone who is contacted by the FBI or other law enforcement agencies.
1) Make sure an attorney is present at all times during any voluntary interview the person may choose to attend. It is important to note that everything you say to an FBI agent or other law enforcement representative is recorded, nothing is 'off the record,' including immigration status.
2) The interviewee may determine the date, time, and location of the interview, including who may attend the interview, including an interpreter if needed. The FBI is required to provide an interpreter if requested.
3) Bear in mind that all such interviews are completely voluntary and that no one is obligated to volunteer to speak with an FBI agent or other law enforcement representative or answer any questions without a court-approved documents.
4) The interviewee has absolute discretion as to what questions
to answer in such a voluntary interview. For example, one may
choose to answer questions about their neighborhood and yet refuse
to answer any questions regarding their immigration status. However,
anything and everything you say during these voluntary interviews
is 'on the record.'