For Immediate Release
Contact: Shira Burns
Jewish Community Asks Governor to Double Security Funding in Wake of Texas Synagogue Hostage Taking
(Boston, MA): As the Jewish community grapples with the emotional aftermath of the recent Texas synagogue hostage-taking situation, the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) this week sent a letter to Governor Baker asking that Massachusetts double state funding for the state’s Nonprofit Security Grant program. Thanks to the Governor’s past leadership in prioritizing the safety of the Jewish community and with funding from the NSG Program, Jewish institutions have been able to put some measures in place to protect their members. Unfortunately, the current funding level is insufficient to address all the requests and many institutions continue to have unmet security needs.
The letter, which was organized by the Jewish Community Relations Council of Great Boston and signed by all six of the Jewish Federations in Massachusetts states, “Unfortunately, the situation in Texas was no isolated incident. Antisemitism threatens the safety of Jewish communities who wish to gather and find community. The communities in Massachusetts have seen arson attacks at centers in Arlington and Needham, an attempt to bomb an assisted-living center in Longmeadow, and this past June, the stabbing of a rabbi outside a childcare facility in Brighton. This is not a new phenomenon, but there has been a concerning rise in intensity in recent years that has led the JCRC to try and increase security provision funding.”
They continue, “Though we were shocked by the act of terror, we were not surprised. Every Jew attending synagogue, sending children to Jewish schools, or participating in Jewish institutions, does so with a sense of unease.”
The JCRC is requesting that the Governor increase the grant program from $1.5M to $3M to reflect the increased security needs of institutions around the Commonwealth.
About the Jewish Community Relations Council
JCRC defines and advances the values, interests, and priorities of the organized Jewish community of Greater Boston in the public square. Visit us at www.jcrcboston.org.