Record antisemitic hate crimes recorded in Canada

Nearly 5,800 incidents including 77 violent incidents were reported to authorities


Members of the Montreal Jewish community at a synagogue in the city. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press via AP)

Canada set a record for the number of antisemitic incidents in 2023 as nearly 5,800 incidents—including 77 violent incidents—were reported, according to the Annual Audit of Antisemitic Incidents from B’nai Brith Canada, which was released on Monday.

The 5,791 incidents reported, an average of nearly 16 per day, is more than double the 2,769 in 2022 and smashed the previous record of 2,799 incidents of Jew hate in 2021. According to the report, no province was spared.

There are 390,000 Jews living in Canada according to government statistics, making it the fourth-largest Jewish community in the world, slightly larger than the UK but smaller than France.

Richard Robertson, B’nai Brith Canada’s director of research and advocacy, said in a release that “Antisemitism is not only a blight on Jewish people. It is an attack on Canadian values and a threat to our multicultural, diverse society. We urge people to think seriously about what this spike in antisemitic incidents says about the direction in which our society is heading.”

The B’nai Brith Canada 2023 audit broke down the incidents of Jew-hate into four categories: Online harassment accounted for the vast majority – 4,847 instances: vandalism, 462 incidents; in-person harassment, 405 incidents; and violence, 77 incidents.

The vast majority of incidents were in Ontario—home to nearly half of Canada’s Jewish community—which recorded 2,401 incidents and accounted for 41.5 per cent of incidents. “Canada-wide” incidents—those that occurred online and not in a defined geographic region—accounted for 27 per cent or 1,581 incidents.

Significant increases in antisemitism were recorded in both the “Prairies/Nunavut” region and Alberta with a 400-percent and 193-percent increase in Jew-hatred respectively.

Quebec accounted for just 9 per cent of all incidents with 523 acts of Jew hatred.

Atlantic Canada, which includes the country’s smallest Jewish communities, accounted for just 2 per cent of all incidents. However, the report states, those 117 incidents represented a significant increase in that region.

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