SALEM, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — City officials and community leaders on the north shore are speaking out against a recent round of anti-semitic attacks aimed at members of Salem's health officials.
The attacks were aimed at members of the Salem Board of Health and staff within the city's Health Department with "names perceived to indicate that they are Jewish," according to a statement from Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll.
These attacks came in response to the way the board of health and its staff have handled COVID measures during the pandemic. Some health officials were subjected to anti-semitic messages and threats sent to them online, by email, and even over voicemail.
In a statement signed by mayor Driscoll and Rep. Seth Moulton along with dozens of local politicians, officials, and community leaders, the group condemned the attacks against the health officials.
"These actions are unacceptable, repugnant, and worthy of condemnation by everyone, regardless of your perspective on the COVID mitigation measures enacted and modified by the Board of Health to help protect public health," the statement reads.
Mayor Driscoll said the attacks have been reported to the Salem Police Department and the Anti-Defamation League. Robert Leikind, the director of the American Jewish Committee New England office, said in a statement he stands with city leaders in condemning the attacks.
"The antisemitic messages directed to members of the board of health in Salem are nothing short of outrageous," Leikind wrote. "These vile comments should never be part of any conversation about how to grapple with the pandemic. We stand with Mayor Driscoll and other elected officials in unequivocally condemning these messages and affirming that Salem will not be intimidated by these expressions of hate.”
Mayor Driscoll encouraged residents and community members to add their names to the list of those signing the condemnation. The statement has over 300 signatures at the time of publication.
WBZ's Charlie Bergeron (@charliebergeron) reports.