New York, NY, October 19, 2020 ... In response to growing concerns that extremists could attempt to interfere at the polls in the next few weeks as Americans cast their ballots, ADL (the Anti-Defamation League) has established a new online incident reporting tool that will enable voters to flag any potential hate crimes or disruptions involving extremists.
In addition to an online reporting form, where the public will be able to report possible hate crimes or extremism-related incidents quickly and confidentially, ADL has established a text short code to provide convenient access to the reporting form. Anyone can text “hatehelp” to 51555 to receive a link and additional information on how to report extremist activity or other manifestations of hate, such as antisemitic or racist graffiti.
“As the 2020 election approaches, we are mindful that some extremists may seek to exploit the divisive political atmosphere in the country,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “This situation has been exacerbated by the pandemic and by irresponsible rhetoric from political leaders fanning the flames of intolerance.”
ADL will process any incident reported and track potential extremist activity in real time. (For voting issues that are not extremist related, ADL will direct voters to contact the national, nonpartisan Election Protection coalition at 1-866-OUR-VOTE).
Additionally, ADL experts will be on standby to assess situations to determine whether there’s a need to elevate reports to law enforcement, polling officials or other government authorities. Staff in ADL’s network of 25 regional offices across the country, who have direct contacts within government, law enforcement, and local community organizations working to prevent racism and hate, will also help assess and follow up on possible threats.
“While some extremists are pushing a hateful agenda this election season, we are committing our resources and expertise to fighting their efforts,” said Greenblatt. “We hope everyone is able to exercise their right to vote in this important election.”