NORWALK - Political and religious leaders from southwestern Connecticut say they are working together to take a stand against hate directed at the Muslim community.

Muslim community members met with both state and local leaders Sunday at the Al Madany Islamic Center in Norwalk to discuss ways southwestern Connecticut can work together to prevent discrimination and backlash against the Muslim community.

In light of recent terror attacks, leaders want to make sure all are safe from any hate-based attacks.

Rep. Jim Himes, along with other politicians and law enforcement officials, vowed to stand against nationwide hate and discrimination aimed at the Muslim community.

"Fear is a natural response, but we just can't give into the kind of bigotry that really gets us cross-wired with the values so important to Americans," Himes said.

Himes addressed the concerns of Muslims in southwestern Connecticut by saying the best way to combat negativity is to educate others on the values of Islam.