Los Angeles City Council passes legislation to prevent hate crimes


(JTA) — The Los Angeles City Council passed legislation aimed at preventing hate crimes in the city.

The legislation approved Tuesday requires the city’s Police Department to establish a hotline for proactive hate crime prevention and to expand the victim’s assistance website with more languages and resources, as well as to offer security assessments to vulnerable institutions.

It also directs the LAPD to “protect vulnerable institutions like synagogues, mosques and cultural centers,” the Los Angeles Jewish Journal reported, citing a statement from City Councilman David Ryu, who co-introduced the original motion.

The passage of the legislation comes days after the LAPD released data showing that anti-Semitic hate crimes rose by 60.5% in 2019 from 2018; hate crimes overall increased 10.3% during the same period. It is the fourth year in a row that hate crimes in the city have increased.

Last year, the highest number of hate crimes were against Jewish Angelenos, with 69 reported crimes, followed by African-Americans with 68 and 53 against gay men. Hate crimes against trans individuals also rose by 23.5% and more than doubled for Muslims.

“We will not give in to fear or cynicism,” Ryu said in a statement. “We will not accept this as the new normal. We will stand together, across communities and across neighborhoods, as one of the most diverse cities on Earth and make Los Angeles a national leader in hate crime prevention. This legislation is the first step in ensuring that our city is prepared and our communities are protected.”

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