Dozens of concerned parents and fearful students packed the Amity Regional School Board meeting Monday night amid growing worries about a string of reported anti-Semitic incidents both inside Amity High School and at the homes of Jewish families around the town of Woodbridge.
“Our children’s safety and security is now at risk,” said one parent.
“Because of this, I can undoubtedly say that I do not feel safe here,” a student told board members.
“The board of ed has a duty to provide our children with a safe and secure environment,” the parent said.
“I’m a junior here at Amity High and throughout the pass two months I have noticed a spike in anti-Semitic acts throughout the high school,” another student said.
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At the campus Tuesday, we noticed an increase in police presence. We came to the school trying to get answers from Amity’s principal, Anna Mahon, but she did not respond to our messages. So, we obtained a copy of a letter the principal sent to parents and students pledging to bring in the Anti-Defamation League to facilitate discussion groups with students.
The anti-Semitic problems in Woodbridge come at the same time the FBI announced hate crimes increased by 17 percent in 2017 for the third straight year.
“It’s clear that it has become a crisis,” said Rabbi Michael Farbman. He told us more should’ve been done before the problem reached this stage. “Part of the response has to be we unequivocally state this is unacceptable,” he said. “There’s going to be zero tolerance for something like this at Amity.”
Late Tuesday evening, Woodbridge police told us state police and the FBI are assisting in their investigation. So far, no arrests have made in connection to a swastika carved on a structure inside a boys locker room.
A press release from police on the vandalism can be read below: