ADL Joins Partners Against Hate Coalition to Address Youth-Initiated Hate Violence
Washington, DC, April 4, 2001…In a serious and urgent effort to prevent youth-initiated hate violence, a comprehensive and innovative approach of outreach, education, and training, with a new interactive Web site, was announced today at the National Press Club, by a coalition of civil rights organizations. Partners Against Hate (PAH), a collaboration of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the Leadership Conference Education Fund (LCEF), and the Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence (CPHV), received a one-million dollar government grant to design and implement this new endeavor. The U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, and the U.S. Department of Education, Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program jointly fund the grant.
"All too often these days we witness young people acting out their biases and hatred in violent ways, " said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. He noted that a recent national study of teenage attitudes found that 84% of American teens harbor some sort of racial or ethnic prejudice. "Clearly, we need to tackle this problem head on and that is what Partners Against Hate aims to accomplish. We know that children do not enter the world prejudiced – but learn it. Therefore, it can be unlearned. Until we have a vaccine against the poison of hate, education becomes the only antidote we have, and our best hope, to counteract racism, anti-Semitism, homophobia, bigotry, and prejudice."
Mr. Foxman said that ADL, LCEF, and the CPHV would together create, implement, and sustain that education. "We know today’s children rely heavily on technology for their entertainment and their education. Thus Partners Against Hate is focusing on the use of technology to deliver this education. Today, we have an opportunity to create a generation that will bear witness to solutions instead of to horrors. To do this, we are committed to creating the necessary tools.
Wade Henderson, Executive Director of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, and Counsel to the LCEF, said "The Partners Against Hate project aggressively integrates technology and the Internet into innovative programs to disseminate a message of racial harmony and non-discrimination to a broad audience and to make more widely available the tools we believe can effectively reduce bigotry and youth-initiated hate violence."
"We are committed to ensuring that every student in the nation is emotionally and physically safe in our schools," said Stephen L. Wessler, Director of the Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence, "and the Partners Against Hate collaboration is an important step toward that goal. By changing the climate in schools from one in which hateful and degrading language is the accepted norm to one where individuals are valued for treating others with dignity and respect, we can reduce hate violence."
Mr. Wessler, whose Center is located at the University of Southern Maine, added that, "what makes Partners Against Hate unique is the integration of technology into every aspect of the program. Working together we hope to help youth, educators, and parents create an environment in schools where students feel safe and are safe."
Representing the Department of Justice was Emily C. Martin, Director of the Training and Technical Assistance Division.
Speaking for their communities at the PAH launch were: Sue Swaim, Executive Director, National Middle School Association, a PAH supporting organization; and Phara Bernardin, a student activist in anti-bias education.
Supporting and enhancing the efforts of ADL, LCEF and the CPHV are an Advisory Group and Honorary Committee, comprised of prestigious professionals in their fields, and a host of supporting civil rights, education, law enforcement, and media organizations.
Using Advanced Technology –www.partnersagainsthate.org
Joining advanced technology with the coalition partners’ broad-based networks and extensive experience in hate crime prevention will allow for the creation of a seamless connection of interactive programs and activities to educate and change hate-related behaviors with a goal toward preventing youthful hate crime.
The PAH innovative and interactive Web site, www.partnersagainsthate.org, will be an important outreach and resource tool for youth, parents, teachers, criminal justice and youth-service professionals, librarians, and law enforcement. A demonstration of the Web site showcased hate crime-related information, resources, news reports and counteraction tools and access to online training and technical assistance addressing bias-motivated behavior.
As the Web site is developed, it will include, among other resources: a Program Activity Guide to provide parents and educators with the necessary tools to engage in constructive discussions and activities about causes and effects of prejudice and bias-motivated behavior, and to intervene with children who engage in such behavior; an Interactive Manual on Hate on the Internet, which will equip parents, educators, and librarians with specific tools to help young people recognize and negotiate hate on the Internet.
Specialized Training Programs will include:
will result in a cadre of training teams capable of conducting workshops on preventing bias-motivated harassment and violence.
Multidisciplinary Regional Training will provide specific guidance on promising and replicable prevention and intervention strategies for a specific local environment.
National/State Policymakers Training will educate Federal and State policymakers and professionals with information about the national hate crime problem, active hate groups, and analyses of implementation of State hate crimes laws and rehabilitation programs in juvenile justice centers.
- Middle School Hate Crime Prevention Training-of-Trainers
By broadening the partner organizations’ extensive "offline" work on hate crime prevention, as well as adapting their approaches for interactive use "online," PAH will: leverage the power of technology to reach the widest possible coalition of individuals of good will; accelerate the speed and ease with which information and technical assistance is shared; add a critical quality of interactivity to existing materials; and sustain the programs and strategies developed well beyond the life of the project.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.