Toronto (March 25, 2021) – Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC) was pleased to note the Ontario budget released yesterday includes new funding for hate education programming and community security initiatives. This includes $1.6 million over two years to support the Anti-Racism and Anti-Hate Grant, which will support community-based efforts to address different forms of hatred, including antisemitism. As well as $2.6 million over two years to support the Safer and Vital Communities Grant, which helps communities prevent and combat hate crime.
“Many Jewish institutions in Ontario - including synagogues, camps and schools - were able to upgrade their security infrastructure and protocols last year as a result of provincial supports, and we are glad to see these supports will remain available so that even more institutions can benefit in the future,” said Michael Levitt, President and CEO of FSWC. “We are also glad to see the province make investments in community anti-hate initiatives and programming, as this is a critical pillar of any strategy to combat hate crime directed at Jewish or any other communities.”
According to police statistics, Jews are the minority group most targeted by hate crime in Canada, with almost one fifth of total hate crimes directed at the Jewish community. A report released last summer by Toronto Police found that about one third of all hate crimes reported in the city specifically targeted Jews.