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March 24, 2020 3:52 pm

‘You’re Spreading the Virus’: Hasidic Man Alleges Antisemitic Discrimination at New York Car Dealership

avatar by Ben Cohen

An employee at Johnstons Toyota in New Hampton, New York, is seen telling a Hasidic customer to leave because ‘you’re spreading the virus.’ Photo: Screenshot.

A Hasidic Jewish man has accused a New York car dealership of antisemitic discrimination after he was denied a pre-scheduled servicing appointment on the alleged grounds that he was “spreading” the coronavirus.

The shocking incident occurred at Johnstons Toyota in New Hampton, New York. Video shot by the Hasidic man showed him asking an employee why his appointment was being denied.

“I thought you’re not open, I had an appointment,” the Hasidic man can be heard saying.

“You gotta go,” the employee replied.

When the man asked, “Why won’t you accept me?” he was again told by the employee, “Can you just go outside please?”

The man nonetheless persisted, asking, as he indicated towards other customers who were being served, “I just wanna understand why all the other guys can have service, and you won’t accept me please?”

Without hesitating, the employee replied, “Because you’re spreading the virus — you gotta go.”

The Hasidic man protested, replying, “I spread the virus? Why do I spread the virus more than other people?”

Responded the employee: “You gotta go buddy, I’m sorry.”

As the Hasidic man insisted on receiving an explanation, the video showed the employee turning his back and walking off.

Attempts by The Algemeiner to obtain an explanation from Johnstons Toyota on Tuesday afternoon were unsuccessful. An employee who answered the phone in the servicing department abruptly hung up when asked whether they were aware of the Hasidic man’s complaint and if there was anyone present at the dealership who could provide a comment or an explanation.

A tweet from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on Tuesday called the video of the Hasidic man’s experience “deeply troubling,” adding that the Jewish civil rights groyo was trying to learn more about the incident.





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