Report says Orthodox suffer ‘shocking racist abuse daily’

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Report says Orthodox suffer ‘shocking racist abuse daily’

Neighbourhood watch group Shomrim release their findings after a month-long study into anti-Semitism

Shomrim members on a patrol with ex-Met Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe in Stamford Hill.
Shomrim members on a patrol with ex-Met Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe in Stamford Hill.

A new study has shone a light on the “shocking daily racist abuse” suffered by Orthodox Jews in areas such as Stamford Hill.

Following a month-long study, Shomrim reported 32 incidents which they claimed were anti-Semitic, including an eight-year boy beaten up on his way home from school and another forced to remove his kippah under threat.

In the review month, it also recorded a woman who was “jeered” and a “group of Jewish women chased through the streets by a gang of teenage girls shouting racist abuse”.

Most incidents took place in Hackney and Haringey, and security volunteer group Shomrim said the results were “the tip of the iceberg,” with widespread acknowledgement that there is under-reporting of abuse.

In the Government’s most recent Hate Crime Action Plan, published in July, the Home Office noted that “Jewish people from the Charedi community are less likely than other sections of the Jewish community to report hate crimes to the authorities”.

Rabbi Herschel Gluck, president of Stamford Hill Shomrim, said: “It has long been said that anti-Semitism is under-reported in the Charedi community, which is the most visible segment of the Jewish community, but these figures are nevertheless shocking, even more so since this is only the tip of the iceberg.”

He urged the Home Office to work directly with Shomrim, because the strictly Orthodox had “a distinct ethos, sensitivities and structure”.

The Community Security Trust (CST) recorded 379 anti-Semitic incidents in Greater London in the first six months of this year, but of these, only 40 were in Hackney.

Mark Gardner, CST communications director, said: “Last year we recorded over 160 examples of visibly Jewish members of the public suffering anti-Semitic incidents, so there is no doubt that this problem needs addressing.”

CAA chairman Gideon Falter said the study showed “the shocking extent to which members of the Jewish Charedi community, including very young children, are being singled out and targeted for racist assaults and abuse”.

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