Community Intelligence Brief: May 3, 2023

May 3, 2023


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Latest News

Toronto Police and FSWC Celebrate Jewish Heritage Month

Today, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC) was honoured to take part in a ceremony for Jewish Heritage Month at the Toronto Police Service (TPS) Headquarters. Accompanying this meaningful event was our Legacy Portrait Project exhibit, on display in the TPS main foyer this week.

We thank Toronto Police Chief Myron Demkiw, Inspector Paul Rinkoff and all at the Toronto Police Service who welcomed us and attended today's event. Thank you to Ontario Solicitor General Michael Kerzner, Toronto City Councillor James Pasternak, TPS Board Vice-Chair Frances Nunziata, Toronto Police Chief Myron Demkiw and Holocaust survivor Andy Reti for sharing heartfelt and inspiring words this afternoon. We are grateful for the continued support we receive from the Toronto Police in fighting against antisemitism every single day and protecting the safety of the Jewish community in Toronto.

For China’s Uyghurs, ‘Never Again’ Is Right Now

In his latest Toronto Star column “For China’s Uyghurs, ‘never again’ is right now”, Michael Levitt puts the spotlight on the current human rights abuses taking place in China. He writes, “If the post-Holocaust vow of ‘Never Again’ still stands for something, it should be updated to ‘Never Again Now.’ That means we must use all means at our disposal — economic, diplomatic, cultural — to step up pressure against China to end its genocidal persecution of the Uyghurs. Now.”

FSWC, in partnership with Jewish Immigrant Aid Services (JIAS), has set up an emergency campaign to raise funds towards subsidizing three Uyghur families to settle in Canada. Please consider donating today here.

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Ontario NDP Distances Itself from Newly Elected MPP’s Twitter Repost About Palestinian Hunger Striker

The Ontario NDP has distanced itself from a social media post MPP Sarah Jama retweeted that mourns the death of an Islamic Jihad terrorist who died yesterday after an 87-day hunger strike in Israeli custody.

“It is disturbing to see a member of Ontario’s Parliament promoting the glorification of an Islamic Jihad terrorist associated with the murder of Jewish civilians in Israel. Not for the first time, Sarah Jama’s ill-informed and reckless behaviour shows her disregard for Jews in her riding and across the province,” said FSWC Director of Allyship and Community Engagement Dan Panneton. “The Ontario NDP must take meaningful action this time instead of merely more vague assurances that it takes this concerning situation seriously.”

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FSWC Deeply Troubled by Ottawa Conference That Promoted Terrorism and Destruction of Israel

FSWC has voiced deep concern to federal and municipal public officials after a hate-filled anti-Israel conference in Ottawa promoted antisemitic rhetoric and terrorism, including releasing a declaration that calls for the “sweeping away” of Israel and expresses support for the Palestinian “revolutionary armed struggle.”

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Teenage Suspect Arrested for Tearing Down, Burning Israeli Flags in Montreal

A teen was arrested in Montreal last week after stealing Israeli flags from a Jewish school and setting them on fire. “We commend Montreal police for their quick arrest of a suspect in connection with the disturbing Israeli flag-burning outside a Jewish school. This sends a message that such hateful acts will not be tolerated,” said FSWC.

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Hundreds of Academics and Institutions, Including Yad Vashem, Condemn Polish Government’s Attack on Holocaust Historian

More than 300 academics and institutions around the world, including Yad Vashem, issued a statement condemning Polish government-led attacks against Polish historian Barbara Engelking, director of the Polish Center for Holocaust Research, for publicly stating that Poles “failed” during the Holocaust and Jews were “unbelievably disappointed with Poles during the war."

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Study: Holocaust Education Reduces Hate Crimes Against Minority Communities

According to new data, mandated Holocaust education in U.S. schools reduces hate crimes both against Jews and other minority communities. Hate crimes against Black communities went down more than 55% in states with Holocaust-education laws, while antisemitic crimes dropped 54.8%.

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Report Antisemitism and News of Concern to FSWC

If you would like to report antisemitism or news of concern to Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, please email

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