Anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York City down in January

Past month sees 21 attacks on Jews, a drop since last year, but Jewish targets still most common for hate crimes in city

Illustrative: Ultra-Orthodox Jews seen walking on a street in New York City on January 1, 2014. (Nati Shohat/Flash 90/File)
Illustrative: Ultra-Orthodox Jews seen walking on a street in New York City on January 1, 2014. (Nati Shohat/Flash 90/File)

JTA — There were fewer anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York City in January than in the same month last year.

The period between January 1 and February 2 saw 21 hate crimes directed at Jews, according to a preliminary set of statistics published Tuesday by the New York Police Department. The same period last year had 25 anti-Semitic hate crimes.

In both years, anti-Semitic hate crimes made up the majority of total hate crimes in the city in January — 72 percent in 2020 and 65% in 2019.

“These are not great trends,” said Evan Bernstein, vice president of the Northeast Division of the Anti-Defamation League. “It’s great that there’s less anti-Semitic incidents, but we want the percentage to also go down of the overall number of hate crimes, and I think there’s a lot of work that needs to be done.”

The slight drop last month comes after anti-Semitic hate crimes rose 26% overall in New York City in 2019. Last year saw 234 anti-Semitic hate crimes, as opposed to 186 in 2018.

The total number of hate crimes also dropped citywide in January, falling to 29 from 38. Crime overall rose nearly 17%.

According to Mitchell Silber, UJA-Federation of New York’s top security official, nearly two-thirds of the anti-Semitic incidents in New York are committed by young people.

In a statement accompanying the January data, Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the NYPD has assigned certain officers to address crimes committed by youth and help young people avoid interacting with the criminal justice system.

“As we double down on our efforts, we will be building bonds with our youngest New Yorkers to make our city safer and fairer,” de Blasio said in the statement

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