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August 18, 2009
2:25 PM

CONTACT: Human Rights First

Brenda Bowser Soder
O -202/370-3323, C – 301/906-4460

Rights Group Calls for Follow Through on Key State Hate Crimes Recommendations

WASHINGTON - August 18 - Human Rights First today welcomed the New York Hate Crimes Task Force’s recently released recommendations to combat bias-based crimes throughout the state and called on state officials to demonstrate the political will to carry out these critical reforms.

“In New York, as in the rest of the world, governments must do more to adequately prevent and respond to violent crimes motivated by ethnic, religious, or sexual orientation prejudices,” said Paul LeGendre, Director of Fighting Discrimination Program at Human Rights First. “These recommendations underscore the important role that local authorities must play in combating hate crimes.”

“Human Rights First’s own recommendations to governments, formulated in a Ten-Point Plan, are largely in sync with the proposals of the Task Force. We strongly believe that training for law enforcement and strengthened hate crime reporting, among other things, will enhance the response to bias-motivated attacks in the state of New York. We hope state lawmakers and government officials will quickly implement these key reforms and demonstrate their commitment to protect all citizens. And we hope their efforts spur action around the world - be it the Free State of Saxony in Germany or the Moscow Oblast in Russia - where stronger government response to hate crime is much needed.”


Human Rights First is a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York and Washington D.C. Human Rights First believes that building respect for human rights and the rule of law will help ensure the dignity to which every individual is entitled and will stem tyranny, extremism, intolerance, and violence.


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