In advance of the Jewish High Holidays, ADL is reaching out to synagogues and Jewish community institutions across the country to provide information on security preparedness and to remind them to make security an everyday priority.
Working through its 25 regional offices, ADL has shared a list of security best practices and encouraged institutions to reach out to local law enforcement to discuss security and advise them of High Holiday schedules and events. The Jewish High Holidays begin at sundown on Sunday, September 9, and Rosh Hashanah is observed on Sept. 10 and 11; Yom Kippur is observed from sundown on Tuesday, Sept. 18 to sundown on Wednesday, Sept. 19.
“The run-up to the Jewish holidays, when Jewish institutions are anticipating high attendance at services and events, is a good time for them to take stock of their overall security plan,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “Congregants should feel safe going to services. When institutions demonstrate that they take security into consideration in their operations, they can provide an extra layer of comfort for everyone as we enter the holiday period.”
A number of ADL’s regional offices have held or are planning security briefings for local institutions, a routine practice for the organization at this time of year. Synagogues and other Jewish communal institutions have been advised to connect with local law enforcement to discuss security and advise them of holiday schedules and events, ensure that ushers understand that they play a critical role in security, establish procedures for controlling access to houses of worship, and more.
ADL is not aware of any specific, credible threats to Jewish institutions at this time, but notes that an uptick of activities this year associated with far-right extremist and other hate groups have been reported, including white supremacist leafleting, banners on highway overpasses, and public rallies. Last year, ADL tracked a 60 percent surge in anti-Semitic incidents against individuals as well as public and private communal institutions across the United States.