Rozic, Kaminsky Announce Hate Crimes Legislation Signed into Law

Legislation Will Create and Implement Hate Crimes Recognition and Response Training for Law Enforcement Officers

Queens, NY – Assemblywoman Nily Rozic (D-Fresh Meadows) and State Senator Todd Kaminsky (D-Long Island) announced the signing of legislation (A3606/S3909) that they sponsored that would create hate crimes response and recognition training for state and local law enforcement officers. The measure directs the Municipal Police Training Council to work alongside the New York State Division of Human Rights and Hate Crimes Task Force to develop, maintain and distribute policies and procedures ensuring local law enforcement are properly trained in recognizing and responding to hate crimes.

“With the steady surge of hate crimes across New York, there is little room for complacency,” said Assemblywoman Nily Rozic. “This new law will equip local law enforcement with the proper tools to identify, report, and respond to these crimes that continue to divide and instill widespread fear.”

“Anti-Semitism, hate and intolerance have no place in our state and nation,” said Senator Todd Kaminisky, a former prosecutor. “I was proud to see this legislation I sponsored signed into law—it will go a long way to ensure law enforcement officers are adept at identifying, responding and investigating these dastardly acts. I will continue to do all I can to protect our communities from anti-Semitism.”

Evan R. Bernstein, Regional Director, ADL New York / New Jersey said: “We are thrilled to see Governor Cuomo prioritize hate crime training for law enforcement by signing S.3909/A.3606 into law. At a time when marginalized communities are particularly vulnerable to hate-motivated violence, and yet hate crimes remain vastly underreported, ensuring that law enforcement is equipped with the tools needed to identify and understand the unique impact of such crimes is critical to combatting bias and hate in our communities. We are so grateful to Assemblymember Rozic and Senator Kaminsky for their leadership, and we look forward to continuing to work together in our collective fight against hate in New York.”

Muslim Bar Association of New York said: “The Muslim Bar Association of New York thanks Governor Cuomo for his leadership in enacting A3606a/S3909a and to Assemblymember Rozic

and Senator Kaminsky for shepherding the passage at this critical juncture. Even as the scourge of hate crimes increases across New York and much of the nation, many experts agree that hate crimes are under-reported. One important factor in under-reporting is the investigating officer does not identify a bias motivation or does not include bias in an incident report. This timely and important law will help ensure officers across our state are trained to recognize and respond to hate crimes.”

Michael Schmidt, Director of AJC NY said: “With the alarming increase in hate crimes across New York State, particularly in Jewish communities, we are pleased that this new legislation will provide our police with the training and support to identify and report anti-Semitic and other hate crimes. We are grateful to Assemblymember Rozic and Senator Kaminsky for their leadership and for introducing this bill. We are proud that AJC NY played a role in ensuring the passage of this important legislation. We are thankful for Governor Cuomo signing the bill and making it law, which will benefit all New Yorkers throughout our great state.”

Yawar Shah & Bahman Farahdel, co-chairs of the New York Muslim-Jewish Advisory Council said: “The Muslim Jewish Advisory Council, convened by AJC NY, brings together Muslim and Jewish leaders to advocate on domestic issues of concern to our communities. Our support for Assemblymember Rozic and Senator Kaminsky’s bill stemmed from our common concern about growing hate crimes and we are grateful to the Assemblymember and Senator for shepherding this bill through passage which will be an additional tool to protect our communities and all New Yorkers. We are thankful for Governor Cuomo signing this bill into law and the impact it will have on New Yorkers.”

Carlyn Cowen, Chief Policy and Public Affairs Officer at the Chinese-American Planning Council said: “With the increase in racism and xenophobia, and particularly the rise in hate crimes in New York the last couple of years, it is critical that New York State take action to respond. We are grateful to see Governor Cuomo sign this bill that would protect New Yorkers, and thank Assemblymember Rozic and Senator Kaminsky for their leadership on this urgent issue.

“We at Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) stand united with all diverse communities in the battle to stop bias-motivated crimes wherever they occur,” said Thomas Yu and Jennifer Sun, co executive directors of Asian Americans for Equality. “We applaud our elected officials for enacting this important legislation to equip law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to combat hate crimes across the State of New York. AAFE thanks Assemblywoman Rozic for her leadership on this critical issue."

Sim J. Singh, Senior Advocacy & Policy Manager of the Sikh Coalition said: “Combatting hate is not a Sikh problem, a Jewish problem, or a Muslim problem — it is a problem any of us can face at any time. If we are going to protect communities impacted by hate, it is imperative that law enforcement understands the communities they swore an oath to protect and serve. This law affirms the importance of empowering law enforcement with the skills necessary to enforce hate crime laws and keep every New Yorker safe.”

While New York has some of the strongest protections against hate crimes in the nation, recent incidents have highlighted a need for better training in recognizing and responding to hate crimes for local law enforcement. By establishing a hate crimes recognition training program, this

measure will help ensure all state and local law enforcement agencies are properly trained in recognizing and responding to hate crimes, discouraging future crimes and creating greater accountability.

The bill’s passage and signing followed months of advocacy and a roundtable discussion with community leaders and activists on the increase of hate crimes across New York. The coalition discussed how their communities can work together on legislative solutions and the grassroots response necessary following a hate-based incident. The legislation is supported by the Anti- Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee and Muslim Jewish Advisory Council, the Muslim Bar Association of New York, the Sikh Coalition, Asian Americans for Equality and the Chinese-American Planning Council.