Security Reminders from JFC Security, LLC for the Cleveland Jewish Community

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Many Jewish communities are seeing an alarming rise in antisemitism across the U.S. including here in Ohio. Both law enforcement and the ADL are reporting that antisemitic activity targeting individuals and Jewish facilities are increasing at a very alarming rate. Experts attribute this spike in violent attacks targeting Jews to the national news cycle reporting on the recent conflict between Israel and Hamas, and the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions. Even prior to these recent events, the FBI’s Annual Hate Crime reporting indicates threats and violent attacks had already been on the rise in the past several years.

We must remember that antisemitism is a serious crime if you are threatened or physically abused because you are Jewish. Any violence against the Jewish community is not to be tolerated and must be reported and stopped. As such, we encourage community members to do their part to help ensure we create an environment that increases prevention, vigilance, and safety for all.

Here are recommendations from JFC Security, LLC – Federation’s security provide – on on how you can help keep our community safe:

  • For all emergencies, call 911 immediately. Do not hesitate or delay! Emphasize the severity of the problem and be sure to report if it is happening near a Jewish facility.
  • Remain on the phone and report as many details as possible to the dispatcher. Tell the call taker what happened and the exact location, time, vehicle license, description of individual(s) etc. of where it occurred. If you can do so safely, take a photograph and/or record the incident and provide to law enforcement upon arrival.
  • If you see a JFC Security officer in the area do not hesitate to approach or flag down and report suspicious or threatening activity to them immediately. The JFC Security officer will relay your information to police upon notification.
  • If you see something or someone that is of concern, ensure you act as quickly as possible. In doing so your quick action may help in keeping potential problems away from the community.
  • Always be on heightened alert and maintain situational awareness in order to identify potential danger.
  • If possible, always walk in pairs, especially after dark.
  • Know how you should react to problems and emergencies.
  • Be alert to unknown individuals acting outside the norm and vehicles that seem out of place driving or parking near Jewish facilities.
  • Talk to your children and teens about safety. It is important to encourage children and teens to trust their own instincts. Teach them that if someone or something makes them feel uncomfortable or if they feel like something is just not right – even if they cannot explain why – they need to walk away immediately and alert an adult.

The troubling increase in hate crimes, antisemitic incidents, and physical violence directed at Jews around the world and here at home is a call to action for all of us. Do your part in helping to keep our Cleveland Jewish community safe by reporting abnormal or threatening behavior to law enforcement and JFC Security immediately for appropriate action. In doing so you will help to keep our community protected and safe from those who might seek to cause us harm.

For more information, please contact Jim Hartnett, JFC Security, LLC president, at 216-593-2929.

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