"We are living in a time when antisemitism is on the rise globally and throughout the United States. The fact is that it can happen right here in the Greater Hartford area, and we need to be prepared and we need to take action." - Michael Cantor, Co-Chair, Federation's Security Committee
Over the past several years, antisemitism and acts of violence targeting Jews and Jewish institutions have increased dramatically across the United States. In response, Jewish Federations are entering into partnerships with the Secure Community Network (SCN), the official homeland security and safety initiative of the organized Jewish community in North America. Together, they are proactively hiring professional security directors – typically, former high-level law enforcement professionals – who build and implement community-wide security plans, strengthen law enforcement relationships at every level, and prepare local institutions and community members for action.
Greater Hartford’s response
"This isn’t about fear. It’s about being prepared, being vigilant, and being strong. We want you – and every member of our Jewish community – to feel safe, secure, and confident going to services, dropping your kids off at day school or Hebrew school, and using all of the amazing Jewish services and facilities Greater Hartford has to offer." - Robert K. Yass, Co-Chair, Federation's Security Committee
The Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford has established a comprehensive Secure Community Initiative to bolster the safety of our local Jewish institutions and community members. In 2021, we entered into a formal partnership with SCN and hired a Community Security Director, law enforcement veteran John Colangelo, who reports jointly to SCN and our President and CEO. We also established a Security Committee to support security planning, implementation, modification, and maintenance and engage our entire community in embracing the new security framework. We will soon convene a Security Council with representatives from every Jewish agency, school, and synagogue in our region.
How you can help
With your generous support, we can ensure that Greater Hartford’s Jewish community is prepared to prevent and – if need be – quickly respond to any security threat.
GIfts and pledges of any size to the Secure Community Initiative are most welcome. We have also launched an endowment campaign to implement security programs more broadly and ensure long-term sustainability. A $6.5 million endowment will provide perpetual funding for security operations.
To learn more about the Secure Community Initiative, please contact Laura Zimmerman, Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President, at firstname.lastname@example.org. To make a gift or pledge to the initiative, please contact Hayley Wasser, Vice President of Development, at email@example.com.