Massachusetts
Massachusetts iStock

A coalition of leaders in Salem, Massachusetts has denounced recent antisemitic threats targeting members of the city’s Board of Health who have Jewish sounding surnames, calling them “unacceptable” and “repugnant.”

The nearly four dozen city, state, business and school officials released a joint statement condemning antisemitic messages sent to Board of Health members, thought to be Jewish, who were inundated with hate messages through emails, online posts and on voicemails by opponents of the city’s COVID-19 measures, Boston25 News reported.

The messages are “worthy of condemnation by everyone, regardless of your perspective on the COVID mitigation measures enacted and modified by the Board of Health to help protect public health,” they said.

"As community leaders in Salem, we stand united to express our unequivocal rejection of these antisemitic attacks, our condemnation of attempted intimidation – especially when it so clearly focuses on targeting an individual based on their race, ethnicity or religion – and our solidarity with our neighbors who volunteer and serve our community thoughtfully, diligently and objectively on our Board of Health and the staff in our Health Department who support them in that work," the group said.

”We reject and condemn vile, racist, antisemitic and regressive attacks – whether online or in person. We support those who volunteer for public service, despite these atrocious and utterly unacceptable actions and messages,” the statement continued.

They also urged “every member of our community to join us in asserting with absolute clarity that Salem is no place for hate."

The statement was signed by Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll, Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA), along with state senators, city council members and Board of Health members.

Salem officials announced that the attacks are being investigated by local police and that they had also spoken with the Anti-Defamation League.

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