The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, applauds today’s announcement by the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security of the release of $24 million in federal funds to protect at-risk nonprofits across America. The release of these funds was the result of the combined efforts of the Orthodox Union in partnership with a coalition of non-profit groups led by United Jewish Communities as well as leading members of the U.S. Congress including Senators Specter, Mikulski, Collins, Pryor and Lieberman and Reps. Price, Weiner, Cantor and Rogers.
As with similar funding in past years, this $24 million in federal funding derives from the Urban Area Security Initiative and will be available on the basis of threat analysis criteria to better protect high-risk non-profit organizations. The non-profits will use the federal funds for much needed physical security enhancements within and around their facilities as well as the training of their staff and other relevant personnel.
In Fiscal Year 2005, $25 million was distributed to nonprofits across 18 states with much of it used to install necessary security barriers and surveillance cameras; a significant portion of the funds were granted to synagogues — a class of entities which have been attacked overseas and threatened within the United States. DHS announced today that this allocation of $24 million will be potentially available to nonprofits in 46 designated communities throughout the nation.
Nathan J. Diament, public policy director for the UOJCA stated:
This funding from DHS is crucial in helping the Jewish community adapt to the current security challenges confronting our community’s institutions, including synagogues and schools alongside other non-profits. We hope to effectively use these resources allocated by the federal government to help our community be more secure in the face of threats. We commend the congressional leaders and the leaders at DHS for meeting this need at this time.