New Chicago ordinance would fine people $1,000 for distributing hate flyers

A new Chicago ordinance would give fines of up to $1,000 to those who distribute hateful or threatening flyers.

Ald. Timmy Knudsen (43rd) introduced the ordinance Wednesday morning to be sent to the City Council's Committee on Health and Human Relations.

The ordinance targets people who disperse hateful or threatening material to "intimidate, emotionally abuse, slander, or threaten another person."

"I’m introducing this legislation to make one thing clear: hate has no home in Chicago and for those who choose to commit acts of hate in our communities – you will be held accountable," Knudsen said in a statement. "There is a long history of hate flyering targeting various groups. As a gay man, I have witnessed these types of incidents targeting the LGBTQ+ community and other diverse groups. It’s time to stop hate flyering – and I’m committed to getting this done."

Fines for those responsible would be between $500 and $1,000 for each offense.

The ordinance comes after a rash of incidents where antisemitic flyers and graffiti were found on Chicago cars and in doorways.

Dozens of antisemitic flyers containing unknown substances resembling rat poison were found earlier this month in Lincoln Park.

Knudsen cited San Diego as another major city that passed similar legislation.