Report: Religion-Based Hate Crimes Highest Since 2001

November 23, 2009

Author: Matthew E. Berger

Source: The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life/Religion News Service

Hate crime incidents targeting people based on their religion were at their highest frequency last year since 2001, according to a new report.

The report, compiled by the Anti-Defamation League from FBI data, found 1,519 religious hate crimes in 2008, accounting for about 20 percent of all bias crimes. It was an increase from 2007, when 1,400 crimes of religious bias were reported.

The number of crimes targeting Jews or Jewish institutions also increased in 2008. There were 1,013 hate crimes against Jews last year, accounting for about two-thirds of all religious bias crimes. It was the largest number of crimes against Jews since 2001.