The number of anti-Semitic incidents in Canada rose to a record high for the fourth consecutive year mainly due to online harassment.
The League for Human Rights, part of B’nai Brith Canada, recorded 2,207 anti-Semitic incidents in its 2019 Annual Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents. That’s an 8% increase over the 2,041 incidents from the previous year and an average of more than six per day.
Ontario had the greatest increase and Quebec saw the largest number of incidents for the second year in a row. Ontario and Quebec are home to the largest Jewish communities in Canada.
Harassment accounted for the largest number of incidents at 2,011, or 91.1%, up from 1,809 the previous year. Of the incidents last year, 83.2% occurred online, including over social media and in threatening emails and text messages.
The number of vandalism incidents dropped to 182 from 221, but violent incidents, including assault, rose to 14 from 11.
Specific incidents included an assault against a visibly Orthodox Jewish man by a Montreal taxi driver; a group of Hasidic children in Outremont, Quebec, being sprayed with tar by a construction worker; and a cleric in Edmonton who publicly suggested that “international Zionism” was behind the ISIS terrorist organization.