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WHEREAS, the Commonwealth of Virginia is deeply enriched by the diversity of its residents, and Virginia is proud to be home to a large and thriving Arab American population; and
WHEREAS, for centuries, Arab American men and women have played an important role in shaping, advancing, and enriching the Commonwealth by making immense contributions to all areas of life including government, business, arts and sciences, medicine, law enforcement, technology, and the military; and
WHEREAS, since migrating to the United States, Arab Virginians have shared their rich culture and traditions with neighbors and friends while setting examples as model citizens and public servants; and
WHEREAS, Arab Americans brought to America resilient family values, a strong and diligent work ethic, peaceful ideals and diversity in faith and creed that have strengthened the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, during Arab American Heritage Month, it is imperative to increase awareness about key issues and priorities within the Arab American community and combat harmful stereotypes, prejudice and discrimination; and
WHEREAS, Arab American Heritage Month is an opportunity to celebrate the great pride and vibrancy of the tens of thousands of Arab Americans in Virginia whose abilities and contributions strengthen Virginia’s economy, diverse culture, and communities; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth of Virginia is proud to celebrate the annual Arab American Heritage Month, and commemorate the essential contributions, sacrifices, and accomplishments that Arab Americans have made to Virginia;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize April 2020 as ARAB AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.