YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A stabbing attack at a Hanukkah celebration in New York is part of a national rise in anti-Semitic violence and harassment. The Youngstown Area Jewish Federation’s director of community relations and government affairs grew up just minutes from where this latest attack happened.
Bonnie Deutsch Burdman said the recent acts of violence against the Jewish community have been horrific, especially during the eight days of Hanukkah.
She believes there have been more anti-Semitic attacks recently than there are candles on the menorah.
“We’re seeing so many people of good conscience coming together and standing up against hate, and reaching out to, certainly, us in the Jewish community,” Burdman said. “Standing with us, and recognizing that their faith traditions don’t respect or respond to that kind of hatred and they will not tolerate it.”
Burdman stressed keeping people of all faiths safe is the top priority.
“Here in our local Jewish community, we take security very seriously. That is not something we have been shy about admitting. We don’t specifically talk about any of the individual or specific acts that we take to secure ourselves, just that security is very important.”
A federal program that would provide $90 million to help churches, synagogues and other places of worship protect themselves from attack is waiting for the president’s signature to become law.