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Guidelines for identifying and reporting anti-Semitic incidents
March 1st, 2013
The Jewish Community Relations Council of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation has drawn up the following guidelines for recognizing and reporting anti-Semitic activity.
What is Considered Anti-Semitic Activity?
Anti-Semitic activity includes overt acts or expressions of anti-Jewish bigotry and hostility. Many incidents are not crimes. Activity can generally be categorized as follows:
• Expression — Written or verbal communication by groups or individuals, including public, elected or religious figures. Includes publicly or privately directed letters, phone conversations, articles, speeches, e-mail or other Internet communication.
• Vandalism — Desecration, vandalism, or other criminal activity against property.
• Harassment, Threats and Assaults — Directed at individuals or institutions.
• Discrimination — Employment, education, housing or organizational membership.
• Hate Group Activity — Rallies, recruitment or other activities organized or sponsored by groups such as the Ku Klux Klan, Skinhead or other White Supremacist groups.
These are not exhaustive or exclusive. The JCRC encourages readers to report all incidents.
How to Report an Anti-Semitic Incident or Activity
All incidents, regardless of whether or not they are reported to a law enforcement agency, should be reported Elana Kahn-Oren, Director, Jewish Community Relations Council, 414-390-5736 or email@example.com.
Harassment or threats made directly to an individual or an institution, vandalism, defacement or other desecration of property (public or private) should be reported to local police departments.
What Type of Evidence or Corroborating Material is Necessary?
It is extremely important both for the purpose of auditing, as well as for intervention and follow-up, that any information or material that can be used to verify or substantiate reports be available. Examples include:
• Original letters, envelopes, faxes, printed copies of e-mail, articles in newspapers, etc.
• Answering machine tape recordings, transcriptions of conversations, pertinent information about radio or television programs (name, date, speaker, etc.).
• Police reports, photographs, video-tape.
• Fliers, mailings, posters.
The JCRC’s professional staff attempts to verify or corroborate all incidents. Staff members respect all requests for anonymity and/or confidentiality by those reporting incidents.
The JCRC refrains from publishing or otherwise making available the names of individual victims or perpetrators. This policy may exclude public figures or comments made in the public domain.
The JCRC may intervene or provide follow-up on reported incidents. This is done on a case-by-case basis, in conjunction with the reporting party.
Based on reported incidents, the JCRC prepares and distributes an annual audit of anti-Semitic incidents to local Jewish organizations, agencies and synagogues, local media and national organizations, as deemed appropriate.
The information is used to develop educational and outreach programming which is designed to combat anti-Semitic activity.