By COLlive reporter
New York Assemblywoman Diana Richardson, who represents the 43rd Assembly District in Brooklyn which includes Crown Heights, was quoted as faulting Jews for gentrifying in her district.
Lew Fidler, an associate of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, said Richardson made the comment during a meeting of Community Board 17.
But board chair Barrington Barrett, who was also present at the meeting, said he heard the term “Jewish people” uttered during a discussion of gentrification, but not by Richardson.
Richardson has now issued a public statement on the matter:
“Over the past few years, it has been an honor to serve a community which surpasses every creed, color, and religion. As a descendant of immigrant parents, I understand the unique plight minority groups may experience.
“As a public servant to a district that serves as a cultural melting pot, I have had the opportunity to work with an esteemed group of rabbis, pastors and community leaders. It has come to my attention that in a conversation about gentrification, the New York Post stated that I said, “It must be Jewish people.”
“I did not make these remarks; these allegations are false. As a passionate leader who values individuals on a human level, I condemn hate, anti-Semitism and racism.
“I will continue to stand with each and every family, group, and leader that I represent. I am humbled by the support of the following community leaders, who truly understand my heart for tolerance, inclusivity and togetherness.”
2 activists in the Jewish community in Crown Heights seemed to accept her denial, attaching their names to her statement.
“It seemed clear to me from the reports that it was not the assembly member who made the offensive comment. I accept her clear denial,” said Rabbi Eli Cohen, Executive Director of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council (CHJCC).
Yaacov Behrman, founder of the Jewish Future Alliance, said: “I believe that the New York Post reported #fakenews. Assemblymember Diana Richardson has always been a friend to our community. She has stated publicly on multiple occasions that gentrification is about economics not race.”