NYPD Commits to Provide Security over Yom Tov at Pre-Holiday High Security Briefing
By Yehudit Garmaise
Spirits were high on Wednesday when approximately 400 Jewish community leaders returned to One Police Plaza for the NYPD’s annual Pre-High Holy Days Security Briefing, at which the NYPD outlines its plans to provide extra patrols for the Jewish Community.
“Since COVID hit we had to have these meetings via Zoom so it was even more meaningful to be with everyone in person,” Inspector Richie Taylor told BoroPark24. “The fact that Mayor Eric Adams and Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell were personally here with us underscores their deep commitment to the safety and security of the Jewish community and all communities.
“Their words were powerful and their presence was greatly appreciated by everyone here.
“President Joe Biden and more than 150 world leaders are in New York City for the United Nations General Assembly, so it’s the busiest time for the NYPD, but as always, we get the job done."
After an hour of schmoozing over breakfast, Rabbi Dr. Alvin Kass, the NYPD’s chief chaplain, who has served the department for 56 years, said, “Today proves that real bagels are better than virtual bagels.”
Turning serious, Dr. Kass then asked everyone to stand as he led a moment of silence for Reb Yanky Meyer, zt”l, “who did so much to help people during bereavement, who was such a vibrant champion of the Jewish people and Jewish causes throughout the years.”
In addition to founding Misaskim, Meyer served as a chaplain for the NYPD and the Port Authority and volunteered as a member of Hatzolah.
The NYPD has been hosting the Pre-High Holiday Briefing for decades, but NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell started out by saying, “We know there is always more work to do.
“Today is about our commitment to you to ensure that you’re able to practice your faith freely and safely.”
Thankfully, the NYPD’s Intelligence Research Specialist Kelli Foy reassured that, “There are no specific threats at this time.”
Commissioner Sewell said that while the recent rise in anti-Semitic and all hate crimes concerns the NYPD, “the situation strengthens our resolve to combat all forms of bias, prejudice, and hate.”
“The NYPD has the best, most robust Hate Crimes Task Force in the country,” Commissioner Sewell said proudly. “We are working 24 hours a day with our police officers, detective squad, community leaders, clergy, and more.”
The way in which the NYPD needs help, Sewell said, is for more victims of hate crimes to file police reports.
“We need more people to report these disgraceful acts,” Commissioner Sewell said. “Reports are the first step in a thorough and extensive process for justice.
“We take all reports of incidents of violence very seriously in the NYPD, and we encourage any victim of crime to come to us right away.
“We will never tolerate hate in any form in this city, and we will continue to build a partnership with the Jewish community and all across NYC.
“Together, we will continue our work to keep our city safe and make sure that everyone who lives, works, worships, and does business in our city feels safe too.
Before wishing the meeting's participants a "Shana Tova," Mayor Eric Adams expressed the respect he has for the community and the leaders of the community.
“Each year during the Days of Awe, the police commissioner, and the NYPD pause and reflect on the proper safety that we are going to provide during these significant holidays of your faith in the city of New York, Adams said.
“You must be as vigilant as the police department. You see something, say something, and do something.
“Let’s continue to be safe.”
Photos by: Dovid Y Jaroslawicz - Chaim Solinsky