PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – After more than a year without in-person services, the Jewish community has returned to synagogues.
However, there have been some high tension regarding the safety of their community over the past year.READ MORE: Barrel And Flow Fest Calls For Boycott Of Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh, Alleges Racism
With Rosh Hashanah only two days away, the Jewish community is on high alert for any bad actors trying to spoil their new year.
Leaders of the faith say security is high so everybody can celebrate as they please.
With high holiday celebrations and service back in person for the Jewish community, but COVID-19 still lingering, some are cautious to attend in person, but others are hesitant for different reasons.
“We are in an elevated threat environment and that means there are extra security measures put in place to help some of the synagogues in the area deal with things during the high holy day period,” said Adam Hertzman, the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s director of marketing.
A spur of anti-Semitic attacks across the country, including Pittsburgh, over the past year, has the community cautious and on the lookout.READ MORE: Clairton Football Team Deals With Fallout Of Recent Violence
“We want to make sure people feel safe and comfortable going to synagogue especially since some people, this is their first time going in a year,” Hertzman said. “At the same time we want to make sure people in the community continue to be vigilant which is very important and the synagogues have the technology and support from law enforcement in place to make sure that people feel safe.”
Hertzman said there haven’t been any specific threats for Rosh Hashanah but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
While he wouldn’t say what specific security is in place, he did say COVID has allowed them time to get everything in place.
“The high holiday of Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish new year and it’s supposed to be a happy celebratory time,” he said. “We want to make sure that not only can people celebrate and wish each other a happy new year but also feel safe doing so, even if they’re doing so in person.”
Hertzman made it clear that Pittsburgh has, is, and should always be a safe place for the Jewish community.MORE NEWS: Balloon Release Held For Steven Eason, The 15-Year-Old Central Catholic Student Shot And Killed At Haunted Hills Hayride
He added that Jewish leaders just want extra vigilance, support, and coordination.