Anti-Jewish Hate Crimes in Toronto more than Doubled In 2023

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CIJA
|June 03, 2024

Jewish community represents 4 percent of Toronto’s population but is victimized in 36 percent of hate crimes 

Toronto, ON – May 31, 2024 – The Toronto Police Service (TPS) has published its 2023 hate crimes report revealing that hate crimes targeting Jewish, 2SLGBTQIA+, and Black populations remained the most commonly reported to police, representing 36, 18, and 13 percent of all hate crimes, respectively. In 2023, TPS recorded 365 reported hate crimes, a 47 percent increase compared to the 248 occurrences tracked in 2022 and well above the 10-year average of 174 hate crimes per year. TPS noted that the Middle East conflict that began on October 7, 2023, was a significant contributing factor to the increased reporting. 

Key figures pertaining to the Jewish community: 

  • In 2023, Toronto experienced a 108 percent increase in anti-Jewish/Israeli hate crime reporting with antisemitic occurrences increased from 65 in 2022 to 135 occurrences in 2023. Of the 135 occurrences in 2023, 130 were anti-Jewish and 5 were anti-Israeli occurrences. 
  • Eighty per cent of the hate crimes targeting a religion were anti-Jewish occurrences (130 occurrences). 
  • Of the 31 hate crime occurrences categorized as multi-bias, the Jewish community was targeted in 15 of the occurrences. 
  • Although comprising only 4 percent of the population of Toronto, the Jewish community was victimized in approximately 36 percent of all hate crimes. 
  • In total, there was a 32 per cent increase in hate crime reporting post-October 7 between the months of October and December 2023.w 
  • Overall hate crimes targeting a religion more than doubled year over year (2023=163 occurrences, 2022=78 occurrences) and accounted for 45 percent of all reported hate crimes. 
  • The three most frequently reported criminal offences motivated by hate in 2023 were mischief to property, unprovoked assaults, and uttering threats. 
  • Members of the Jewish community were the most targeted by hate-motivated mischief related occurrences, with 98 occurrences reported. 
  • Notably, uttering threat occurrences targeting the Jewish community increased by 13 occurrences, from one (1) in 2022 to 14 occurrences in 2023, making it the most frequently targeted victimized group in this category. 
  • In 2023, almost half of the hate crimes committed via telecommunication targeted members of the Jewish/Israeli community. Of the 14 occurrences, almost 79 per cent (11) of these occurrences were reported after October 7, 2023. 

In response to the report, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) released the following comment: 

"The release of TPS Hate Crime Stats for 2023 substantiates the historic rise in antisemitism that Toronto's Jewish community has been confronting not only since October 7, but as an upward trend since 2020. The more than doubling of antisemitic incidents last year compared to the year prior, however, shows the outsized impact that hate stoked by a war half a world away has had on our community. Ours is a community that has been forced to live in fear and discomfort at work, at school, and on the street because of the anti-Jewish hate that has permeated Canadian life. To those who are trying to gaslight the community saying that we are conflating a dislike for the Israeli government with antisemitism, please note that you aren't fooling anyone - not us and not the police, who specifically noted that, of the 135 incidents targeting the Jewish community, 130 were anti-Jewish and 5 were anti-Israeli occurrences. 

“To elected officials who say that this is "not what Toronto is about or who we are", the numbers speak for themselves. Leadership at all levels must finally put an end to the atmosphere of permissiveness towards antisemitism that is now rampant in our city. The relentless hatred, intimidation, and fear-mongering must stop. Action is needed now.”  

 

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Additional Background 

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Le Centre consultatif des relations juives et israéliennes (CIJA) est l'agence de représentation de Fédérations juives du Canada - UIA, représentant les fédérations juives à travers le Canada. En cliquant sur  «  Sign up , »  vous acceptez de recevoir des mises à jour périodiques de CIJA. Vous pouvez vous désabonner à tout moment.
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The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is the advocacy agent of Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA, representing Jewish Federations across Canada.
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