Third Annual Eradicate Hate Global Summit Takes Place

Laura Ellsworth, back left, David Shapira, Mark Nordenberg and Charles Moellenberg, at lectern, during the opening of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit. (Joe Porrello / The CC Pulse)

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By Joe Porrello

Editor’s note: The Eradicate Hate Global Summit began in 2021 in response to the mass shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue. This year, The CC Pulse was there for the first time in service of our Stop the Hate coverage. This will be the first of many stories to come about or inspired by the summit.

PITTSBURGH — The third annual Eradicate Hate Global Summit was held Sept. 27-29 in Pittsburgh.

Leading anti-hate experts from a range of disciplines and sectors came to Pennsylvania from around the world to discuss their progress on combating hate as well as future strategies.

According to its website, the summit is “the world’s most comprehensive anti-hate conference.”

A combination of roughly 1,200 participants and conference speakers were in attendance for day one.

Over the course of the summit, about 350 individuals from around the globe spoke during a combination of around 50 plenary panels, breakout rooms and keynote speeches.

Newly appointed EHGS President Charles H. Moellenberg was one of the first to address attendees during the opening ceremony.

“We are certain that your creative ideas can and will make a difference, will make our communities more respectful of one another and more peaceful,” he said.

The EHGS was formed in the aftermath of the largest antisemitic attack in U.S. history.

On Oct. 27, 2018, gunman Robert Bowers used hateful ideologies as motivation to murder 11 Jewish worshippers at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.

Ellsworth told attendees that a focus of the summit is “making Pittsburgh not remembered for the horror that happened here to those we loved, but the center of a centrifugal force of the best minds in the world who are actively combating hate in all of its forms.”

Some of the speakers in attendance were part of public policy organizations; tech companies; federal, state and local government. Others were law enforcement officials, military veterans, judges and lawyers, doctors and other mental health professionals, educators and academic researchers, data scientists, and journalists and filmmakers.

“I’m confident that you will leave here much more inspired than when you came in,” said Moellenberg to the crowd.

Since the inaugural summit in 2021, specific factions called working groups have been assembled to target particular areas of hate and extremism.

The Education Working Group, for example, hones in on schools as a place to hopefully nip hate in the bud among youth. Additionally, this year’s conference featured the first Eradicate Hate Student Summit, which brought together teens from 14 Pittsburgh-area high schools.

Panels covered a variety of topics such as spotting youth red flags for hate-filled extremism, the strategies social media companies have in place to combat and prevent hateful content, and hate-fueled violence against the LGBTQ+ community.

Victims of past and modern-day violence steeped in hate gave firsthand recollections of how it has affected their lives, among them Holocaust survivor Inge Auerbach and Raymond Whitfield, the son of Ruth E. Whitfield, the eldest of the 10 victims in the May 14, 2022, Buffalo, N.Y., grocery store massacre.

Undercover hate group members ambushed last year’s summit, shouting and holding up signs after getting inside, leading to heightened security measures this year, according to a guard.

Next year’s summit, to be held Oct. 21-23, 2024, will focus on the progress and goals of the individual working groups.

For the Record: Due to a typographical error, this story previously had the wrong date for the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. It is now correct. 

This resource is supported in whole or in part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs as part of the Stop the Hate program. To report a hate incident or hate crime and get support, go to CA vs Hate.

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