December 7, 2019

NY Youth Hockey Players’ Parents Say Opposing Team Shouted Anti-Semitic Slurs During Game

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

Parents of players on a New York youth hockey team are alleging that their opponents hurled anti-Semitic comments at their players during a Nov. 17 game at the Westchester Skating Academy.

Steven Borenstein and Gary Sipos, both of whom have sons on the Scarsdale Raiders, told CBS New York that the North Park team shouted “disgusting Jew” and “go back to synagogue” at the Raiders. Additionally, Hebrew Institute of Riverdale Rabbi Avraham Weiss wrote in a Nov. 19 letter to the Scarsdale Youth Hockey League that the family of one of the Raider players told him that “take that you Jew” and “go back to Shabbos” were also shouted at the players. 

He was also told that the referees and the North Park head coach didn’t take any action on the matter.

“Such actions are beyond reprehensible,” Weiss wrote. “They are unacceptable. I write to demand you, as leaders of the league, take immediate action.”

The North Park Hockey Association said in a statement to CBS New York that they “are working with the Scarsdale Hockey Club and the Hudson Valley Hockey League to gather the facts so we can take appropriate action if action is warranted. Regardless of what happened, we are going to use this as a moment to educate our players on this important issue, as this is clearly about much more than hockey.”

According to News 12 Westchester, practices have been put on old while the investigation is ongoing.

Anti-Defamation League New York and New Jersey Regional Director Evan Bernstein tweeted, “This report of a #Westchester #youth hockey team that says their players were attacked [with] #antisemitic comments during a game is horrible and we are reaching out to learn more.”

In April, 15 members and three coaches for the Los Angeles Junior Kings were suspended after a video emerged of members of the team saying “f— the Jews” and laughing as a member issued a Nazi salute. The team toured the Museum of Tolerance a month later.

Museum of Tolerance Director Liebe Geft told the Journal at the time, “Being a champion is more than winning. These young people are playing at a formidable level of competition and they have to do so while they’re also leaders and role models and they need to demonstrate excellence in character and emotional intelligence. So yes, being a champion – you have to be a winning player… and you have to be a mensch: a human being of integrity, humility, dedication, commitment, caring, and you have to relate well to others, and this is where the museum comes in.”