New York University’s Washington Square News laments: “Muslims lacking a place to cleanse.” It’s a sad story, but rays of sunshine are peeking through the clouds:
“We haven’t received any student complaints on this issue,” university spokeswoman Kelly Franklin said in an e-mail, “but we are looking at [Installation of footbath facilities] as part of our planning process as we look to meet the needs of all of our faith-based communities on campus, specifically in the new multifaith facility we are hoping to build on the Catholic Center site.”
Franklin is referencing the Thompson Street Catholic Center, which has an Islamic Center in the basement. The Islamic Center has raised a half million dollars in the hopes of building a new multifaith center.
Muslim Chaplain Khalid Latif insisted that the Muslim community has a pretty good relationship with the university as a whole, and he isn’t putting in a formal request for footbaths. But Princeton University, where Latif once worked, is installing footbaths and he recognizes the benefits of proper facilities.
“The students here are going to have to wash up for their prayers, and the bathrooms are not made for that stuff,” he said. “Sinks aren’t made to have your foot in them. They slant, water splatters everywhere, and the bathrooms begin to smell.”
In case its report is not sufficiently graphic, the Washington Square News helpfully supplies the photo above.
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