Emily DroobyAug 12, 2017, 8:59 pmAug 14, 2017, 9:48 am

Mahwah residents sue officials in battle over eruv markers

Lawsuit is latest in heated dispute over religious symbols

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Thin plastic pipes called Eruv have become the center of a lawsuit against Mahwah Township after officials demanded that the Jewish markers be taken down.

The signs mark an enclosure where Jewish people can do things during religious times like the Sabbath that they wouldn't normally be allowed to do outside of the home.

A major step was taken in this case after a Rockland County Group and two Orthodox Jewish residents of Rockland County in New York filed a federal lawsuit against Mahwah Township on Friday.

The document outlines that with the eruv up, people in the area have had an easier time of practicing their religion. They say that forcing them to take it down would be an “intentional deprivation of plaintiffs’ rights and liberties under the first and fourteenth amendments."

The document also lists what they call openly anti-Semitic statements that they've seen and heard since this issue started.

In an interview earlier this month, Mayor Bill Laforet maintained that this is about town rules, not religious persecution.

"This all stemmed from a simple sign violation and it has blown up to something that is so widely detrimental to this whole area, all of our communities. And it's not that, it's not that at all," he said.

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