One of Shomrim’s most important duties is helping victims of hate crimes, and assisting them through the process of bringing the perpetrators to justice.
We are proud to say that in 2017, we facilitated 22 arrests following anti-Semitic incidents, of which 11 resulted in prosecutions. Victims of anti-Semitic crimes who receive support from Shomrim are much more likely to see the perpetrators brought to justice than the national average.
Many victims of hate crime feel uncomfortable going forward to bring their stories to the police. Even if they do so, the police often lack the resources to follow up with the leads and gather evidence.
Following anti-Semitic incidents, Shomrim are frequently the first on the scene, gathering evidence and giving the victims constructive advice on how to bring a statement to the police. We remain at the victim’s side through the stressful process of bringing a complaint and giving witness testimony in court.
Throughout, Shomrim’s role in supporting the victims is vital, bridging cultural gaps between the Orthodox Jewish community and the legal system, maximising the chances of a successful prosecution.
Anti-Semitic incidents reported to Shomrim include many instances of verbal abuse, often shouted from passing vehicles, and aimed at children or schools. While these do not always result in prosecution, Shomrim’s care to make certain every incident is documented and reported ensures that the police have an accurate picture of the challenges faced by the Jewish community.
Shomrim’s goal is a London where everyone can go about their daily business without fear of suffering abuse because of their religion or ethnicity.