In 1991, then-Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld, a Republican, created the statewide Task Force on Hate Crimes. The group worked to expand the scope of the law and increase penalties for people who commit hate crimes before Weld disbanded it in 1997. Republican Governor Charlie Baker re-established the task force Monday. WAMC’s JD Allen spoke with one appointee: Dara Kaufman, executive director of the Jewish Federation of the Berkshires.
Kaufman is the only task force appointee from Berkshire County. Northampton Police Chief Jody Kasper, Hampden District Attorney Anthony Gulluni, and Amherst College student Deborah Williams are also among the western Massachusetts appointees.