FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 16, 2020
Press Release: Toronto Hate Crime Statistics Underscore Troubling Need to Fight Hate
TORONTO, ON – This week, Toronto Police Service will present its 2019 hate crime data, indicating a small increase in reported hate crime over the previous year. Toronto’s Jewish community constitutes a tiny fraction of the city’s population but was the most frequently targeted group for hate crime. In 2019, nearly one third of all hate crimes in Toronto were antisemitic in nature.
York Regional Police, which published its hate crime data in late April, reported similar trends. The Jewish community was the victim of more than 70% of all hate crimes motivated by religion and of more than 30% of hate crimes overall. Hate crimes targeting the Jewish community in York Region rose 38% from 2018.
In response, Barbara Bank, Chair, CIJA Toronto, issued the following:
“Sadly, these statistics are no surprise to members of the Jewish community in Toronto. Year after year, Jewish Torontonians are the most frequently targeted group when it comes to hate crime. Whether the immediate targets of hate are individuals or community institutions, these crimes leave a lasting, harmful impact on victims and the broader community.
“While our diverse society is one of the most inclusive places in the world for minorities to live, Canadian leaders at all levels of government should be deeply troubled by the most recent hate crime data. We must be vigilant against hate as a society, knowing that what starts with Jews never ends with Jews. It is time to take action to protect all Canadians from the dangers of hate.
“Ontario lawmakers are currently considering Bill 168: An Act to Combat Antisemitism, which empowers government agencies to more effectively address the threat of contemporary antisemitism. We urge every Member of Provincial Parliament to support their bill and affirm their commitment to combating antisemitism.”
- Toronto Police Service 2019 Annual Hate Crime Statistical Report [Page 202]
- York Regional Police Statistical Report January-December 2019
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) is the advocacy agent of the Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA