Five Towns synagogues are using training and technology to help better protect their property and their members.
Congregation Aish Kodesh, in Woodmere, was awarded $75,000 in federal money through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Nonprofit Security Grant Program last year. Dr. Efrayim Nudman, the temple’s president, said that forced-entry-resistant technology, security-modified doors, an alarm system and surveillance cameras will be installed when the “quite complex and slow” grant compliance process is completed.
Nudman said that such actions are prudent in these perilous times, with Islamic terrorism and ant-Semitism on the rise throughout the world and organized or lone-wolf attacks becoming more common.
“The leadership of Aish Kodesh, as well as the leadership of many other congregations and schools in the area, have woken up to this reality and are taking proactive steps to protect themselves,” Nudman said. “We see it as our duty to make sure that our congregants are as safe and protected as they can possibly be, while attending services on our shul.”
Shalvehet High School, a yeshiva for girls housed in the Temple Hillel building in North Woodmere, received a federal grant about five years ago, said Rabbi Steven Graber, the synagogue’s spiritual leader. The temple installed security cameras and an intercom system to communicate with people who want to enter the building and with onsite security guards.