NY Gov. Kathy Hochul bans the Confederate flag, other hate symbols on public property


New York Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation Tuesday barring the display of symbols of hate on all public property and equipment after a fire truck decorated with a Confederate flag sparked outrage last year.

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The bill expands on a law passed by Hochul’s predecessor, disgraced former Gov. Andrew Cuomo, that prohibits the sale or display of hate symbols on state-owned property and at state-sponsored events. The new legislation adds towns, cities, villages, fire districts, volunteer fire companies and police departments to the list of institutions subject to the law.

Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation Tuesday banning the display of the Confederate flag in New York.

Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation Tuesday banning the display of the Confederate flag in New York.
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The banned symbols include any that relate to “white supremacy, neo-Nazi ideology, or the Battle Flag of the Confederacy,” the legislation states.

In August 2020, a truck from the volunteer Brookhaven Fire Department in Suffolk County displayed the flag during a parade, eliciting widespread condemnation and the resignation of two firefighters, Newsday reported. 

Weeks earlier, photos emerged of a Confederate flag hanging in the window of a Nassau County firehouse, according to the release.

Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and newly sworn-in Gov. Kathy Hochul

Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and newly sworn-in Gov. Kathy Hochul

“The recent and disgusting rise in racist, homophobic, and hateful behavior will never be tolerated in New York,” Hochul said in a statement. “Symbols of hate have no use other than to spread ignorance and incite violence.”

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She added, “There is no reason for a symbol of hate to ever be on display, let alone by a police or fire department charged with protecting their community.”

The law, which takes effect immediately, was sponsored by state Sen. Anna Kaplan, D-North Hills, and Assemblymember Michaelle Solages, D-Elmont. 

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