Fighting crime in New York City is Police Commissioner James O'Neill's mission, and for that, the Staten Island Council of Jewish Organizations, known as COJO, honored him at the Jewish Community Center in Sea View.
It's the same place where on January 11, police say a sticker with a swastika was found on a bathroom wall, along with the words "bomb 1111."
Because of acts like this, the commissioner said they're working to prevent similar threats, along with many other issues facing the borough.
"Nobody should ever live in fear because of who they are or how they worship or how they choose to live their lives," he said to the crowd.
The investigation into that particular incident is still open. Meanwhile, increased security is in place at JCCs across the country after several centers were targeted with bomb threats last month.
COJO President Mendy Mirocznik says coming together is the only way to stop such acts.
"We do not appreciate, we condemn evil and hate, and that's how you quell this," he said. "We do not allow a few bad people to disrupt our wonderful way of life in the borough."
According to the commissioner, hate crimes went down last year 13 percent, and hate crimes against Jews went down 29 percent. However, members of the community said that doesn't mean you can slow down the fight against it.
"I just feel when things are bad in the country or any place, you try to blame somebody else, and if you don't understand some religion or some group of people, you go after them just out of ignorance," said Blanche Ricci, a COJO member. "And that's why everyone needs to be educated and get along."
Police are asking the public to do their part to help. An upcoming active shooter training at the JCC will allow residents to prepare for the worst.
"We can't always prevent threats, but we can take the necessary steps to make sure that people are prepared to deal with them," Deputy Ebony Washington said.
It's a partnership that could go a long way towards helping keep the community safe.