Latimer and Holstein Work to Fight Anti-Semitism
In response to the disturbing rise of anti-Semitic incidents, Westchester County Executive George Latimer has issued a call to action, emphasizing the urgent need for comprehensive education and enforcement measures to address this trend. Joined by outgoing Eastchester School Board Trustee Judah Holstein, the two leaders are collaborating to tackle anti-Semitism head-on and create a more inclusive and understanding community.
Latimer, a Roman Catholic, said: “We cannot continue to accept the rising tide of anti-Semitic actions occurring in Westchester; we must do more to educate and enforce.”
Holstein, who attended Yeshiva University and the Young Israel of New Rochelle, emphasized the importance of education as a primary weapon against intolerance. “Education is the key,” Holstein said: “and education is not limited to what happens in the classroom. The County, working through its Youth Bureau and funded non-profit organizations, can do more.”
In a joint effort, Latimer and Holstein are embarking on a multifaceted approach to combat anti-Semitism in Westchester County, with a strong emphasis on the County’s educational institutions:
· Education and Awareness: Programs like 13 Drivers Licenses, the portable exhibit that was in Eastchester Schools in May, will educate students about the history and significance of Judaism, the Holocaust’s horrors and the enduring impact of discrimination.
· Cultivating Inclusivity: A safe and welcoming environment for all students will be promoted through initiatives such as student clubs that celebrate diversity, interfaith dialogues and guest speaker events that share personal stories and experiences.
· Zero Tolerance: A stringent zero-tolerance policy against hate speech, discrimination and bullying will be upheld in collaboration with school administrators.
· Community Engagement: Workshops, seminars, and events will encourage open dialogues and understanding among diverse groups.
· Resources and Support: Acknowledging the need for specialized resources, schools will be connected with organizations and experts dedicated to combatting hate and promoting tolerance.
As the County prepares for the release of its proposed 2024 budget in just over two months, both Latimer and Holstein are actively identifying the resources required to advance these cooperative strategies.
By jointly addressing the issue of anti-Semitism and committing to comprehensive education, Westchester County is taking a significant step towards creating a harmonious and inclusive community where differences are celebrated and prejudices are eradicated.