The FBI recorded 938 single-bias hate crimes targeting Jews in 2017, a sharp increase from the 684 incidents it recorded in 2016, and the largest number of hate crimes targeting Jews since 2009. Anti-Jewish incidents made up 58.1% of hate crimes motivated by religious bias, up from 54.2% in 2016.
The number of police agencies participating in the FBI’s crime reporting program, and contributing data to the hate crime report, also increased greatly in 2017. It’s unclear how much of the higher count could be attributable to increased participation. Police departments covering 306 million Americans reported their figures to the FBI in 2017, compared to 289 million in 2016.
The report comes weeks after a synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in which 11 Jews were killed.
According to the FBI, 58% of the single-bias incidents in 2017 were motivated by race or ethnicity, while 22% were motivated by religion. Anti-Jewish bias is considered anti-religious bias for the purposes of the FBI’s work. Another 16% were motivated by sexual orientation bias.
FBI Reports Major Increase In Hate Crimes Against Jews
Josh Nathan-Kazis is a staff writer for the Forward. He covers charities and politics, and writes investigations and longform.