Jewish harassment and discrimination still exist all over the US, and with family in New Jersey, I have also experienced this harassment and discrimination. A case of Jewish harassment in New Jersey brings this into the spotlight after Brandon Jacobs was awarded a $1.25 million settlement.
The man’s harassment stems from his time working with the township.
He filed a lawsuit in 2015, but he had been working for the township since 1999. A tax and utility clerk, Jacobs claims that he experienced harassment and discrimination on a “near-daily basis.”
Superiors and coworkers allegedly taunted Jacobs, a man of the Jewish faith. Anti-Semitic slurs and Nazi propaganda became the norm for Jacobs. He filed the lawsuit against the township claiming that the hostile work environment was allowed, causing him economic harm and distress.
The township chose to pay $625,000, while the remaining will be paid by the township’s insurer.
Jacobs claims that the harassment went as far as Nazi propaganda being placed in his work area. He claims supervisors were present when coworkers told him that he “killed Jesus.” Other slurs were also directed at Jacobs, and he also claims that supervisors had also made comments to him.
He suffered from such high levels of distress that he would eventually go on disability leave.
Residents are outraged at the settlement, which lacks transparency and is reportedly signed to stop “further legal expenses.” The township claims that the settlement is not an admission of fault. Residents fear that their taxes are going to go up because of the settlement, and there are fears that other settlements may come about in the future.
Experts claim that anti-Semitism is on the rise in New Jersey. The Anti-Defamation League released a report finding that in the first three months of 2017, there was an 86% rise in anti-Semitic incidents nationwide.
New Jersey had a 14% increase in incidents between 2015 and 2016.
The ADL claims that it’s time to put all of their resources together to stop the anti-Semitism in the state. Hate crimes against others, not including Muslims and Jews, is on the decline since 2015.
But what can be done to stop the rise in anti-Semitism? The United States is in a state of divide with an increase of racism.
Britain is no different, with the occurrences of anti-Semitism being so bad that people are relocating.
One means of stopping the hate is to have leaders in the community stand in solidarity with victims. Messages of acts not being tolerated are a good start, and it’s time for community members to stop ignoring the hate that continues to brew in many cities.
Federal funding for vulnerable religious groups can also be increased, but so far, only $20 million has been granted to these groups.
White House officials can be quick to back these religious groups, standing together against hate and violence. Corrective action is needed to reverse this growing hate, but it needs to come from the top: White House and community leaders that will not stand by while Muslims and Jews are singled out.