The year 2020 wasn’t just significant because of the pandemic. It also brought about protests over racial and social justice, a highly contentious election and political cycle, and alarming incidents of harassment and assault for a number of communities, including Jewish residents.
Although Anti-Defamation League numbers show a decrease in antisemitic incidents from 2019 to 2020 in New Jersey, the director for the region Scott Richman said they would have been considerably higher were it not for the lockdown and school closures. “The trajectory was there. We could see that in January and February of 2020, there was a considerable increase over those same numbers for 2019, [which was] a historical year for antisemitism across the nation and in New Jersey,” Richman said.
Major funding for Exploring Hate has been provided by the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Antisemitism, The Peter G. Peterson and Joan Ganz Cooney Fund and Patti Askwith Kenner.