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FIRST REPORT: Toms River Sued Over Discrimination Against Orthodox Jews

A lawsuit has been filed against the Township of Toms River and the Toms River Zoning Board in the United States District Court, alleging that they have been discriminating against Orthodox Jews and their civil rights, and specifically their right to build a shul in the township.

The lawsuit, filed by Bais Brucha, headed by Rabbi Mordechai Sekula, alleges that Toms River officials have “engaged in an orchestrated campaign” to prevent the Orthodox Jewish community from growing in Toms River, “including the passage of targeted and discriminatory zoning regulations” such as requiring that a shul be built on a ten-acre property, an impossible requirement for kehillos to fulfill, thereby preventing them from ever building a shul.

The lawsuit notes how residents have referred to Orthodox Jews as “cockroaches,” “parastites,” “a cult,” among a host of other derogatory labels. It also notes how anti-Semitic graffiti has been scrawled and etched into playground equipment, cars, and lawns. The lawsuit claims that township officials have responded to this hate by taking action to target Jews and their ability to construct shuls, schools and residential developments.

The actions of the Township “discriminate against religion, were motivated by religious animus, and have prevented” the plaintiffs “from engaging in their religious exercise,” the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit requests that the judge provide relief to Orthodox Jews by declaring Toms River’s discriminatory land use ordinances void, that the denial of the Bais Brucha application to build a shul is void, and an order to block Toms River from treating houses of worship worse than other property types.

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There are 3 Comments to "FIRST REPORT: Toms River Sued Over Discrimination Against Orthodox Jews"

  • Yosef says:

    I hope they focus on schools as well. If the TR kehilla ever hopes to have a school system for themselves and not have to drive into Lakewood the bulk requirements of schools need to be reduced as wey. They now require 10 acres for schools.

  • Chief Bull Moose says:

    I’m going after them for that racist Native American logo.

  • Fl says:

    I personally am not moving there because of all the blatant antisemitism. We don’t have that in Lakewood proper.

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