As security in France is being tightened in the wake of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, we must urge our government to do all in its power to similarly protect its citizens and institutions against any and all threats of such violence. The Jewish community has a particular stake in this issue as it is no secret that we are a vulnerable and high risk target.
One vitally important step to help safeguard our nation and our community is to urge Congress to increase the FY 2015 and FY 2016 allocations for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP), which will soon be taken up in both House and Senate as part of their respective Homeland Security Appropriations bills. NSGP provides funding to acquire security cameras, concrete barriers, reinforced doors and other such security enhancements for non-profit institutions, in selected cities, at high risk of terrorist attack. Shuls, yeshivos and other Jewish community institutions have been among the major beneficiaries of the program over the years.
Given the increasing terrorist threat, the current funding level of $13 million for NSGP is simply not enough to adequately secure American institutions. We urge you to contact your Senators and Representatives and convey to them the message that it is imperative that NSGP be increased to at least its original allocation of $25 million. We also urge that you encourage your elected officials to communicate this concern to both House and Senate Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittees. This will help provide more security to more institutions in more communities – enhanced protection that our nation urgently needs.
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