The Mayor and Council unanimously approved a resolution condemning anti-Semitism during Monday's work session, making New Milford the first municipality in Bergen County to pass such a measure.
The resolution, sponsored by Councilwoman Hedy Grant, is a response to a string of anti-Semitic incidents that recently occurred in Bergen County. Among them:
- December 10th incident where anti-Semitic graffiti was spray-painted on the property of the Reconstructionist Temple Beth Israel in Maywood.
- December 21st incident that occurred on the first day of Hanukkah where swastikas and other offensive markings were found spray-painted on the façade of Temple Beth El in Hackensack.
- January 3rd incident where arsonists used an accelerant to start a fire in the rear of Congregation K’hal Adath Jeshurun in Paramus.
- January 11th incident where an incendiary device was thrown through the window of Congregation Beth El in Rutherford, a synagogue and rabbinic residence.
The resolution acknowledges that the residents of New Milford have a rich history of being tolerant to all faiths and religions and that "an attack on one faith or religion is an attack on all."
According to the document, the Mayor and Council condemn all forms of hatred and anti-Semitism and encourage the use of law enforcement resources of Bergen County "to apprehend the perpetrators of these heinous acts."
Grant told Patch that she is appalled by hate crimes.
"Such crimes show a lack of compassion, understanding, tolerance and acceptance for those who are perceived to be 'different' in some way."
"Clearly the acts perpetuated against Bergen County synagogues — and in one case directly against a rabbi and his family — should not and must not be tolerated or accepted. I am proud that New Milford is the first municipality in Bergen County to publicly condemn such crimes," Grant said.