The Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations is calling on you to send a message to the McIntosh County Commission and demand that they stop plans to remove zoning protections for the Gullah Geechee community in Hogg Hummock, one of the last intact Gullah Geechee communities in the U.S., and make the process more accessible to the Hummock’s residents.
McIntosh County is proposing zoning changes that would allow developers to purchase large tracts of land in the historic Hogg Hummock district where the Gullah Geechee have lived for centuries. This seemingly mundane change poses an enormous threat to the community and their way of life.
To make matters worse, McIntosh County has scheduled meetings related to this change at times when it is extremely difficult for Hogg Hummock residents to attend and make their voices heard. For Hogg Hummock residents, the mainland is only accessible via a ferry that operates three times a day. The public hearing for rezoning is scheduled for Thursday September 7th on the mainland at the same time as the last ferry back to the island. The County Commission’s working meeting on Monday the 11th and final vote on Tuesday the 12th are scheduled the same way, so that those who live on the island and are most impacted by this change will not be able to attend.
Sapelo Island is home to one of the last intact Gullah Geechee communities in the country. They are the descendants of Bilali Mohammed, one of the first Muslims in the U.S. He wrote the first piece of Islamic scholarship in the U.S., the Bilali Document, which is known as the Mother Text of American Islamic literature.
The Gullah Geechee deserve protection and support. Instead, the McIntosh County Commission is trying to push them off their land without letting them have a say in the matter. Take action now. Tell the McIntosh County Commission to stop this zoning proposal and to make its meetings accessible to the residents of Hogg Hummock.