New Jersey law enforcement officials have increased patrols at houses of worship, community centers, and cemeteries in the wake of recent bias incidents, Gov. Christie's office said Friday.
"We live in a world where hostilities have become part of our everyday lives and are directed at what makes us as New Jerseyans and Americans so unique - our diversity," Christie said in a statement. "We are coming together today to stand as one New Jersey - committed to furthering understanding and tolerance throughout our diverse communities."
The governor on Friday joined other officials, including U.S. Sens. Cory Booker and Bob Menendez, at a solidarity rally at the Kaplen Jewish Community Center on the Palisades in Tenafly, N.J.
The New Jersey state police in recent weeks have been conducting "target-hardening" measures at religious institutions, and officials with the state Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness have been providing increased security training at houses of worship, according to the governor's office.
The state Attorney General's Office is offering a $10,000 reward for tips leading to a bias crime conviction, and has trained state police and county prosecutors on responding to bias crimes. Attorney General Chris Porrino said the office had taken steps "given the recent threats and other hateful messages directed against our Jewish, Muslim and African American friends, among others."
The office has a website where bias crimes can be reported: www.nj.gov/oag/bias.
Earlier this week, the Jewish Community Center in Cherry Hill was among several Jewish institutions in the region that were evacuated due to a rash of bomb threats.
In Philadelphia, the Mount Carmel Jewish cemetery was recently vandalized. Gov. Wolf on Thursday requested a federal hate-crimes investigation into acts against Jewish institutions in the state, including the cemetery.