The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia partnered with the Chamblee Police Department to host the first of a series of community forums designed to educate the public about hate crimes and other civil rights enforcement tools to address hate crimes, hate incidents, and discrimination.
“Our most recent United Against Hate Summit was one of many ways our office seeks to combat hate crimes and incidents in our district,” said U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan. “We were honored to be joined by leaders from our community who work tirelessly to address hate incidents and discrimination who attended the summit and served as guest speakers. Like the summit participants, we encourage all citizens in our district to take a stand on hate and report these types of incidents to our office.”
The event, held on June 21, 2023, in Chamblee, Georgia, featured facilitated discussions with several members of the community including:
- Georgia State Representative Esther Panitch, who spoke about her experience as a Jewish woman who received antisemitic fliers at her home and her decision to report the incident.
- Japjee Singh, a young Sikh man who was harassed in school based on his religion and national origin. Following a complaint about the harassment from Singh’s Family and the Sikh Coalition, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Department of Justice reached a comprehensive agreement with DeKalb County School District that included, among other things, anti-harassment training and a safety plan to ensure Singh’s safety in the school.
- Brandon White, a gay man who spoke about being beaten and called slurs outside an Atlanta convenience store in 2012. His case resulted in criminal prosecution of his attackers by the U.S. Attorney’s Office and was one of the first successful prosecutions under the federal hate crimes statute based on sexual orientation.
- Gerald Bostock, one of the named plaintiffs in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in Bostock v. Clayton County who spoke about his experience as a gay man who was fired based on his sexual orientation.
Presenters provided interactive video clips and engaged with the community to emphasize the importance of reporting hate crimes and incidents.
Members of the community also heard from community organizations including Disability Link, Georgia Equality, NAACP, ADL, Georgia Consumer Mental Health Network, and Raksha. These grass roots organizations discussed alternatives to DOJ enforcement by highlighting the work they do daily to combat discrimination and hate incidents.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office will host additional United Against Hate events in the coming months to engage with communities across the Northern District of Georgia. These events will encourage further collaboration, support hate crime prevention efforts, and encourage more citizens of our district to report hate crimes and acts.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.
CORRECTION: Please note that Raksha was spelled incorrectly in this release. That has been corrected in the body of this release.