Muslim leaders are reporting a spike in racial abuse and the Race Relations Commissioner is concerned.
Dame Susan Devoy says the leaders have said the abuse is aimed mainly at women and children, many of them walking to and from school.
"The Human Rights Commission is concerned for the wellbeing of vulnerable Muslim Kiwis, some of whom are being wrongly targeted and blamed for things they are not responsible for and have vehemently opposed," said Dame Susan.
"Those people terrifying other New Zealanders are bringing the hatred we loathe into our streets and suburbs."
Dame Susan issued her statement on the day Prime Minister John Key said the Islamic State was recruiting New Zealanders and five were fighting in Syria.
"Prime Minister Key stressed that as well as making a valuable contribution to our nation, Muslim New Zealanders are as distressed by the actions of terrorists and their violent messages as anyone else," she said.
"When we bring the violence and the hatred we see on our television screens into our communities, when we scream hateful abuse at a woman in a veil and her children, we are the ones creating the terror."
source: newshub archive