Today, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America – the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization – applauded Senator Chuck Schumer’s announcement of his proposal to quadruple the funding level for the federal government’s security grants to synagogues and other houses of worship and nonprofit organizations.
Orthodox Union Executive Director for Public Policy Nathan Diament, participated with Sen. Schumer and other faith community leaders in the press conference announcing the proposal.
At the midtown Manhattan press conference Diament stated:
“More than a decade ago, we at the Orthodox Union worked with Sen. Schumer and other Congressional allies and coalition partners to create the Nonprofit Security Grant Program. We did so out of a sense of concern and an abundance of caution. But we did not envision the nightmare the Jewish community is living through today. Jews have been assaulted on the streets of Brooklyn, murdered in a kosher grocery in Jersey City and attacked in a home during a Chanukah party.
In the face of this and more, we are thankful for Sen. Schumer’s leadership and applaud his bold proposal to quadruple the federal government’s Nonprofit Security Grant Program to $360 million. When enacted and disbursed, these funds will make people in our community more secure; these resources will save lives.”
Orthodox Union President Moishe Bane stated: “The Orthodox Union is committed to doing everything we can to keep our shuls, schools and community members safe. We must ensure that all Americans of all faiths feel safe when they enter their places of worship.”
Orthodox Union Executive Vice President Allen Fagin stated: “We applaud Sen. Schumer and other officials who realize the time for statements alone in response to terrible attacks is over. It’s time for action.”
(The Nonprofit Security Grant Program, administered by the US Dept. of Homeland Security, provides grants of up to $100,000 apiece to synagogues and other houses of worship as well as parochial day schools and other nonprofits at risk of terror attacks. The funds can be used for security improvements to buildings and to hire security guards. At the urging of the Orthodox Union and with the support of Sen. Schumer and others, Congress just approved a 50 percent increase to the program, funding it at $90 million for 2020. This latest allocation brings the total funding for the program since its start to $419 million.)