Mark your calendars for an awareness campaign taking place later this month by the Ocean County Prosecutors Office.

The kick-off to “Love Thy Neighbor: There is No Room for Hate in Ocean County” will begin the weekend of May 31 through June 2.

For the kickoff weekend, the Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer has requested that all religious ceremonies in houses of worship throughout Ocean County address issues related to tolerance and kindness with a recognition that understanding is more important than divisiveness.

“My office and the other twenty county prosecutor’s offices in New Jersey share a responsibility to detect, investigate, indict and convict those who violate the laws of our State,” Prosecutor Billhimer said. “I take great pride in this mission. I also believe that it is my duty to exemplify leadership beyond the realm of police work and the courtroom. As our county struggles with divisions based on race, ethnicity, religion and political views, it is incumbent on myself and all community leaders to embrace diversity. It is important to send a clear message across the respective communities that make up our great county that kindness and tolerance is preferred over vitriol and hate speech."

The original “Love Thy Neighbor” weekend was initiated by multiple faith based and community leaders in partnership with the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office and the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office to counteract the rising hate and bias in society.

There is a national, broader organization, Love Thy Neighbor USA that can be found online at www.LoveThyNeighborUSA.com and Facebook.

For more information, or to learn how you or your organization can participate in this year’s program in Ocean County, contact Mike Colwell, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, at Mcolwell@co.ocean.nj.us, Bryan Huntenburg, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, at BHuntenburg@co.ocean.nj.us, Scott Gartner, at scott@lovethyneighborusa.com or Colin Lewis at colin@lovethyneighborusa.com.

More Jersey Shore News: