NEW YORK CITY — New York City Council passed a bill increasing fines for attacks against houses of worship following an increase of vandalism incidents.
The bill was unanimously approved by City Council, and increases the minimum fine for damaging houses of worship from $500 to $1,000.
“These attacks directed against some of our most cherished and sacred instructions are an affront against all New Yorkers and should be roundly condemned,” said Councilmember Fernando Cabrera. “These attacks not only instill a sense of fear in our city, but also have the potential to further escalate existing tensions within our diverse community.
The NYPD hate crimes task force investigated a series of vandalism crimes at several Bronx synagogues at the end of April. Video showed a man at seven incidents. At many of them he broke synagogue windows.
In January, a Brooklyn man was arrested for vandalizing several Brooklyn synagogues with antisemitic graffiti.
Several people were arrested for tagging anti-police graffiti on St. Patrick’s Cathedral last May.
“Every New Yorker deserves to feel secure in practicing their faith, conversely, we at the council today demonstrated our duty to stand and staunchly defend religious liberty in our great city,” Cabrera said.