Throngs of demonstrators joined by elected officials walked solemnly across the Brooklyn Bridge in a solidarity march Sunday against anti-Semitism and all acts of hate.
The “No Hate, No Fear” march was organized by New York’s Jewish community in the wake of recent anti-Semitic attacks, including a knife attack at a Hanukkah celebration north of New York City that left five people wounded and a fatal shootout at a kosher grocery in Jersey City, New Jersey.
The crowds of participants jammed the streets in lower Manhattan as they waited their turns to get across the bridge.
“It is wonderful that we are doing this and sad that we still have to do it,” said Claudia Stoller, 31, of Manhattan. “But it was never lost on me that the Jewish community could always be targeted and should always be ready to be strong.”
Marchers carried signs saying “No hate in our state” and “Always here without fear.”
Among the elected officials at the march were New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and U.S. Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand.
“Discrimination, racism, anti-Semitism, is repugnant to every value that New Yorkers hold dear, and repugnant to every value that this country represents,” Cuomo said as he lauded the crowd of several thousand that turned out in support of the march.
Among the speakers was noted Askan and Jewish community activist, Chaskel Bennett, who delivered a passionate speech defending the Chassidic community, and condemned those who are attacking Yeshiva community which is sowing the seeds of hate.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced an additional $45 million in funding is available to help protect New York’s religious-based institutions, including non-public schools and cultural centers, against hate crimes. Funding is being made available through Requests for Applications under New York’s Securing Communities Against Hate Crimes Grant Program. Created by Governor Cuomo in 2017, the program provides funding to strengthen security measures and prevent hate crimes against non-profit day care centers, community centers, cultural museums, day camps and non-public schools, which may be vulnerable because of their ideology, beliefs or mission. Since the program’s inception, more than 500 such projects have been supported by $25 million in state funding. The Governor also announced the creation of a new tip line that New Yorkers should call if they experience bias or discrimination – 1-877-NO-HATE-NY. Additionally, the Governor announced that State Police will continue increased patrols and security in Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods across the state.