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LI Lawmakers Push Bill To Teach Kids Meanings Of Hate Symbols

August 13, 2019 - 7:18 pm
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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Nassau County lawmakers are putting pressure on Albany to pass new legislation to ensure children learn about symbols of hate in school after seeing a shocking uptick in hate crimes this year.

County Executive Laura Curran pointed to the numbers, saying it’s obvious there is a problem that is not going away anytime soon.

“So far in 2019, we are up. We have 44 hate crimes already on the books,” she said. “This time last year that number was 20.”

The bill, sponsored by Long Island Sen. Todd Kaminsky, comes after seven swastikas were discovered at a pavilion at Theodore Roosevelt Park in Oyster Bay last week.

“Clearly we are not giving our young people the knowledge that they need to not perpetrate these kinds of crimes and spread the fear that they are spreading,” Curran noted.

The legislation would mandate public and private schools across New York State incorporate discussions about swastikas and nooses into curriculums in grades 6 through 12. 

Kaminisky says the bill is crucial to ensure children understand the history and meaning behind these symbols.

If passed, it would go into effect no earlier than September 2020.