Photos provided by Assemblyman David Weprin's office
Hateful graffiti found on the exterior and interior of the abandoned Holliswood building.

Jamaica Estates is no place for hate.

That was the message residents and elected officials delivered outside the former Holliswood Hospital on Friday, June 23, after racial and anti-Semitic graffiti was discovered there last week.

During the June 23 press conference, Assemblyman David Weprin, Councilman Barry Grodenchik, state Senator Leroy Comrie and the neighborhood’s religious and civic leaders railed against the painted and carved symbols, including a KKK symbol and swastikas, discovered on the facade of the building. Additional graffiti was also discovered inside the hospital containing hateful language directed toward African-Americans.

The hospital, located at 87-37 Palermo St., was closed in August of 2013. The site has been abandoned since.

According to Weprin, the hateful graffiti was first discovered on Sunday, June 18, and the incident is being investigated as a hate crime by both the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force and the 107th Precinct. Authorities from the Hate Crimes Task Force have since been on site three or four times and are currently looking into a potentially suspicious car seen on the premises, the assemblyman continued.

At the press conference, Weprin called the acts of vandalism an “assault” on the diverse community’s values.

“The people of Queens stand together as a community against each and every incident of hate, and I thank my colleagues, religious clergy and civic leaders for joining me today to speak out against these despicable acts of vandalism,” Weprin said.

Graffiti discovered on the site's fencing

Graffiti discovered on the site’s fencing

“The despicable actions of the vandals who defaced the Holliswood Hospital site neither represent nor have a place in our community,” Comrie added. “Queens is a bastion of harmonious diversity — and that’s what makes us great. I thank Assembly Member Weprin for bringing the community together to reaffirm this.”

In the wake of the incident, members of the community at the press conference called for increased surveillance in the neighborhood, as well as lighting outside of the abandoned site.

Rabbi Moshe Taub of Young Israel of Holliswood also spoke out against the hateful incident.

“Queens in general and Holliswood in particular is known for its diversity,” he said. “On the weekends one finds in Holliswood Sikhs, Muslims and Jews — the three main demographics of Holliswood — walking with their families. This act was a stain on this beautiful and diverse community. This is not to mention the survivors of the Holocaust who already have their arms painted by the Nazis and who now must also have to witness a sign painted on the walls of their neighborhood that brings them back to years of torture. Sad and infuriating.”

Weprin’s office will work with the building’s owner to see that the graffiti is removed.

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joe June 26, 2017 / 06:16PM
Senator Leroy Comrie found time to speak out about hateful graffiti in Holliswood, an area whose demographics tend to be Sikhs, Muslims and Jews, BUT yet has not yet spoken out about a 15 year old girl who was pimped out by Joseph Gilbert (from your neighborhood of St. Albans), for four months at Rev. Floyd Flake’s Greater Allen Cathedral Senior Residence in your district (https://cleanupjamaicaqueens.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/11-days-the-flakes-and-greater-allen-church-have-made-no-comment-about-underage-girl-being-pimped-out-of-greater-allen-cathedral-senior-residence-for-four-months-plus-some-new-info-arises/). Not to make light of hate graffiti, but no one was hurt at least physically by this act, but what do you think that 15 year old black girl went through for four months at Flake’s Greater Allen Cathedral Senior Residence. Doesn’t she at least rate somewhat to have you or any other local elected official or community leader speak out on her behalf and also to speak of the large number of underage girls of color in the Jamaica/SE Queens area who have been forced into prostitution. Sounds like you are playing favorites. OH, WAIT, you are up for reelection and the Sikhs, Muslims and Jews vote, but this 15 year old black girl does not. OK, I get it. AND so identity politics still continues with the Democrats in Jamaica and SE Queens. NOW, black residents of Jamaica, WHY do you continue to vote for this ebony version of Star Wars’ Jabba the Hutt. He does not even have the decency to make a comment about a young 15 year old black girl forced into prostitution at the almighty Rev. Flake’s Greater Allen Senior Residence, but he found time to wobble over to Holliswood to speak out on hate graffiti. https://cleanupjamaicaqueens.wordpress.com/

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