Governor Deval Patrick told more than 1,100 Muslims at a Roxbury mosque yesterday that he knew many have encountered discrimination and racial profiling since Sept. 11 and that he would do everything in his power to combat those problems.

Speaking at what Muslim activists described as the first such forum with a Massachusetts governor, the 53-year-old Democrat pledged to take seven steps to help Muslims in the state.

The measures ranged from urging businesses and governments to allow Muslims to take time off to attend Friday afternoon prayers to publicly denouncing discrimination and racial profiling against believers of Islam.

Although he responded "yes" when asked pointedly whether he was committed to each measure requested, Patrick sometimes broadened his pledges to recognize that other religious and ethnic groups deserved the same protections and accommodations.

Read the complete original version of this item...