Federation forms Security Committee

By Reporter staff

As part of its efforts to increase security for Jewish organizations in the area, the Jewish Federation of Greater Binghamton has formed a Security Committee. The committee is working with Mark Henderson, the director of community security for the Jewish Community Federation of Greater Rochester, to help local organizations increase their security efforts. Henderson is coordinating this effort with the Secure Community Network, the national Homeland Security initiative of the Jewish Federations of North America and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.

“I wish we didn’t need this committee,” said Shelley Hubal, executive director of the Federation. “But antisemitism and antisemitic attacks are up. While we may disagree about many things, the need for security is not one of them. We are united in our desire to be prepared for all possibilities and to protect our community. “

Steven Malkin has agreed to be the chairman of the committee. “Our local Federation recognizes that a threat to one is a threat to all,” Malkin said. “The focus of this committee is the safety and security of our Jewish community. This is consistent with many other Jewish communities across North America, many with far greater resources and dedicated staff, to address the ever present, but changing, threat to Jews. We are formalizing an association with the Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester. The opportunity to draw on this Federation’s experience in providing security, grant applications, information sharing and training will provide us with a valuable resource. We encourage everyone to support this committee by expressing their concerns, questions, ideas and, of course, donations.”

Hubal notes that the effort will be helped by the Jewish Federations of North America’s LiveSecure program, a $54 million security campaign and initiative to ensure the security and resiliency of Jewish communities that will take place over three years. “This will be a new program for Federation and another way we can make an impact on the community as a whole,” she said. The funds received will be based on new and increased pledges to the annual Campaign, and will be used solely for security. 

The Federation has already organized a variety of programs to help keep organizations safe: a security seminar for faith-based organizations in conjunction with the Broome County Council of Churches; an active shooter training; and a “Stop the Bleed” program in conjunction with Temple Israel’s Safety and Security Committee. “We plan to have more training to help our community members prepare in case the worst happens,” Hubal said. 

Members of the committee include representatives of local organizations, such as Beth David Synagogue, Hillel Academy of Broome County, Hillel at Binghamton, the Jewish Community Center, Norwich Jewish Center, the Rohr Chabad Center for Jewish Student Life, Temple Concord and Temple Israel. 

To make a pledge or increase a pledge to help the security efforts, click here. For more information, contact Hubal at director@jfgb.org or 724-2332.