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We Are All B'klyn Press Conference Against Hate Crimes 3/27

 
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DMCKEON
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 8:34 pm    Post subject: We Are All B'klyn Press Conference Against Hate Crimes 3/27
From Thu Mar 27, 2008 3:30 pm to Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:00 pm (included)
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FROM: We Are All Brooklyn



CONTACT: Lara Mayouhas 212-983-4800 ext. 145 or mayouhasl@jcrcny.org

RSVP: Dori Zofan 212-983-4800 ext. 140 or zofand@jcrcny.org

Press Advisory

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz; Councilmember John C. Liu; Mohammed Razvi, Co-Founder of We Are All Brooklyn and Executive Director of Council of People’s Organization; Rabbi Uria Ohana, the victim of last week’s hate crime outside a Brooklyn subway; and Wing Chuen Lui, the father of a recent victim of a hate crime in a Brooklyn public school, will hold a press conference on

Thursday, March 27th at 12:30 P.M.at Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon Street in Brooklyn
At the press conference, more than two dozen multi-ethnic, religious, communal, and political leaders will sign a poster-sized statement denouncing hate, distribute palm cards that contain vital information about hate crimes that every New Yorker should have, and announce two upcoming conferences that will address the rise in hate crimes.


The leaders will call upon victims of hate crimes to share their inspirational stories and ask everyone in attendance to sign the statement against hate.

_____________________________________________





STATEMENT: WE STAND UNITED AGAINST HATE

Last week, the city of New York and the borough of Brooklyn were the victims of a malicious bias attack.

On March 18, 2008, as Uria Ohana, 25, an assistant Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi at a Massachusetts Chabad Center, exited the F Train subway station in Park Slope, a young man grabbed his yarmulke and ran. When Uria chased the perpetrator to retrieve his yarmulke, the youth ran into the street and was hit by a passing car. Uria approached the teen to check on his condition. At that point, the attacker’s two friends approached Uria, and began punching him in the face and shouting "Allahu akbar." In response to Uria’s shouts for help, many of the thirty bystanders called 911. A suburban SUV picked up the two young men that were punching Uria and sped away.

The NYPD responded at the scene and later arrested the perpetrator who had been struck by a car. As of now, the police are still looking for the accomplices. We applaud the patrol officers for their timely response as well as the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force, which has categorized the incident as a hate crime and is investigating further.

On December 17, 2007, Kwok Po Lui, a 14 year-old Chinese student at a Gravesend Middle School was beaten with brass knuckles by nine students. He has lost 90% of his hearing and still suffers from headaches and memory loss. Lui now attends classes with a social worker for fear of future attacks. Two students have been suspended by the school, one student has been arrested, and the NYPD continues to investigate the attack.

We commend our elected and appointed officials and community leaders for their quick and decisive response. In addition, we call on the offices of our city's five District Attorneys to swiftly and deliberately prosecute such crimes to the fullest extent of the law thereby communicating that acts of hate are not acceptable and perpetrators will receive the severest penalties.


Our borough, one made rich by its diversity, will not fall prey to the blindness of such hate. An attack in words or deeds directed against any person due to their race, religion, ethnicity or any other characteristic, is an attack on the fundamental freedoms that are the hallmark of American democracy. When any one group is assailed, the very fabric of our society is torn. Hatred in any form will not be tolerated.

We, the undersigned, the membership of We Are All Brooklyn, a coalition of community based organizations representing the diversity of the borough that have come together over the past five years to address issues and concerns that cut across ethnic and racial lines, stand together as a beacon of hope and a voice of defiance to unbridled hate. We will not stand idly by and permit prejudice to shatter the harmony in Brooklyn and its neighborhoods. We will act together to educate our leadership and constituencies about the tensions and stresses experienced by all people. We will continue to promote the message of how our diversity can and will bring about a more just and inclusive society for all. Finally, we will rededicate ourselves to fostering the values of cooperation, understanding, and respect as we rise to confront this challenge and others that may lie ahead.

We Are All Brooklyn continues to work with all groups throughout the city to respect others' backgrounds and their contributions and to prevent such incidents from occurring.
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