Riverdale residents have been noticing stickers and flyers with antisemitic slogans, protest “cheers” and slurs being posted on a wide variety of street signs in central Riverdale. Recently, these stickers have been found on a Do Not Enter sign located at the corner of West 239th Street and Henry Hudson Parkway South, a parking meter sign near the corner of West 235th Street and Cambridge Avenue and a stop sign at the corner of West 236th Street and Netherland Avenue. These newest stickers stated, “Zionism is Terrorism” and “Stop Funding Genocide.”
New York City Council Member and Chair of the Council’s Jewish Caucus Eric Dinowitz stated: “My office has unfortunately been contacted by concerned constituents regarding the presence of deeply disturbing and antisemitic stickers and flyers within our community. These hateful materials promote divisive rhetoric and spread misinformation about Jewish people and those who support Israel’s right to exist.”
Dinowitz added: “In response to these incidents, we have taken immediate action to have the stickers and flyers removed, working closely with agencies such as The City of New York Department of Sanitation (DSNY), Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), and New York City Department of Transportation (DOT). Our commitment to addressing these issues is unwavering, and we have ensured that such materials are never allowed to remain in public view for more than 24 hours. Additionally, we have reported some of these incidents to the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Unit.
“While we currently do not have any leads on the individuals responsible for placing these materials, we are actively working with law enforcement to investigate any leads or suspicious activity reported by concerned constituents,” Dinowitz continued. “As your Council Member, I am deeply saddened and disgusted by the presence of these antisemitic materials in our community. Antisemitism has no place in our society, and it is disheartening to see such extreme misinformation being circulated, including baseless claims such as equating Zionism with genocide. We remain committed to combating hate in all its forms and ensuring that District 11 remains a welcoming and inclusive community for all.”
Rabbi Barry Dov Katz of the Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale stated: “Zionism is the return of the Jewish people to the land of the Jews. Zionism is recognizing that the Jewish people, like all people, deserve a home. Zionism battles terrorism. Antisemitism, including the libel that calls Zionism terrorism, has no place in our community. Zionism is hope.”
A concerned Riverdale resident who wished to remain anonymous expressed: “It is upsetting to see this happening in my neighborhood. I have lived in Riverdale for over 40 years, and I am so upset to see these messages of hate. However, it is reassuring that as a community we have such allies in our government representative.” Another local resident stated: “I was shocked when I saw these hateful stickers. I know there has been an increase in antisemitic incidents in New York City, as well as across the country, but I really never expected I would ever see it on my own street, where my family and I live.” Dinowitz’s office later confirmed that stickers mentioned above have already been removed by DSNY and the MTA. The office also noted that the Police Department’s 50th Precinct is aware of the situation, and they are on the alert for antisemitic stickers or flyers.