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Councilman Vallone holds rally to condemn hate crimes

Council Members Vallone and Grodenchik Host Rally to Fight Hate.
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Elected officials and religious and community leaders gathered at the Samuel Field Y in Little Neck for a rally last Friday condemning the rising number of anti-Semitic attacks in New York City and all forms of discrimination.

The rally, led by Councilmen Paul Vallone (D-Bayside) and Barry Grodenchik (D-Oakland Gardens), was a response to the 55 percent spike in hate crimes in the city compared to this time last year. NYPD officials attributed the jump to a 94 percent increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes in particular.

The rally called for increased funding to the NYPD’s Hate Crime Task Force to crack down on hate crimes.

“The continuing rise of anti-Semitic attacks and hate crimes bthroughout our city and country is despicable and unacceptab­le,” Vallone said. “Today we stand with religious, community and political leaders from every community. This is the true strength of our city and this how we will stand united against hate and discrimination in every form and against any group.”

Vallone said the elected officials want to provide the resources and funding needed by the NYPD’s Hate Crime Task Force and were asking the mayor to allocate more funds in the next fiscal year city budget.

State Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Flushing), state Assemblywoman Nily Rozic (D-Flushing), Assemblyman Edward Braunstein (D-Bayside) and Assemblyman David Weprin (D- Hollis) were also at the rally.

Multiple religious leaders from the area attended as well, including Queens Jewish Community Council President Michael Nussbaum, Rabbi Yossi of the Chabad Lubavitch of Northeast Queens, Rabbi Eli Shifrin from Temple Torah of Little Neck, and Monsignor Martin Geraghty of St. Robert Bellarmine in Bayside Hills.

Since the beginning of 2017 at least 91 Jewish organizations across the country, including schools and Jewish community centers, have been the target of 116 bomb threats, 15 of which were made against Jewish locations in New York state.

“There has been a surge of hate crimes and anti-Semitic attacks across our country over the last few months,” Grodenchik said. “We have seen a disturbing rise of anti-Semitism in our own city. We need to make it clear that New York City will stand together to combat hate, violence, and discrimination of any kind.”

He added, “Queens is the most diverse place in the world with over half of the residents being immigrants. We embrace and cherish our diversity. An attack on one group is an attack against us all and I will fight every day to ensure the safety of all New Yorkers.”

Reach Gina Martinez by e-mail at gmartinez@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4566.

Updated 9:59 am, March 21, 2017
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Reader feedback

d'shawn from Queens says:
There are very few 'hate crimes' in NYC. Both Vallone and this site are exaggerating. Vallone for his vote-pandering and timesledger for its lack of readership.
March 21, 5:31 am
how about all crimes from Queens says:
If someone rapes and kills your family member I think you would want Vallone against this more than against some idiot telling a muslim to go home.
March 21, 8:54 am
anon44 from queens says:
d'shawn from Queens is an obvious moron. I really hope that you become a victim of a vicious crime and nothing gets done about it due to your not being a "biased" person. Obviously from your always having to post something negative, nobody will care if you are lying on the street bleeding to death. The only concern would be the person who has to clean the blood off the street. Needless to say, you will respond to this because you just can't help it. And if think the readership is down, why are you reading this newspaper anyway? Just so you can find things to kvetch about?
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