Five people stabbed by a machete-wielding attacker at a Hanukkah celebration in Monsey. Four shot at a kosher grocery store in Jersey City, after the shooters failed to access the 50 children in the yeshiva next door. Massacres at synagogues in Pittsburgh and Poway. These were not just one-off tragedies. According to both FBI and ADL statistics, anti-Semitic attacks have seen double digit increases in recent years. The shocking is becoming routine; anti-Semitic incidences are approaching near historic levels in the United States.

We do not accept this as the new normal. Neither should any decent democracy. Our people should not be scared to walk the streets, pray in their synagogues, and send their children to school.

In New York State the Nonpublic School Safety Equipment (NPSE) Grant is a streamlined grant for nonpublic school safety and security equipment. It is the only source of state funding that is available to nearly all nonpublic K-12 children, regardless of school size. In recent years, $15 million was allocated for the NPSE, or approximately $37 per child. New Jersey, by contrast, last year approved an allocation of $150 per child for a similar grant, doubling its previous rate.

Please take the time to contact Senate Majority Leader Stewart Cousins, Assembly Speaker Heastie and your local representatives in the legislature and urge them increase security funding under the NPSE Grant for nonpublic school children to $30 million. Our children need to be and feel safe in these dangerous times, and this is the grant that can most directly provide it.