You may be aware of the recent string of antisemitic vandalism this week including the defacing of “We Stand With Israel” signs provided by Jewish Federation, anti-Israel graffiti in front of Taylor Allderdice High School and most recently antisemitic graffiti in the Summerset neighborhood. After learning about the vandalism in Summerset yesterday, we were able to coordinate quickly with law enforcement and our elected officials to ensure that the area was secure and that the Jewish community was receiving support.
Given the many people who have expressed safety concerns, we would like to provide some reassurance even as you remain vigilant and continue to report antisemitic activity. While we are in a heightened threat tempo, please know that there are no current threats against the Pittsburgh Jewish community. The Jewish Federation’s Jewish Community Security team is working in close collaboration with local police as well as the FBI to proactively monitor potential threats or concerns. If we become aware of a threat, we have a communication plan in place to alert the community and adapt to the threat.
We ask your help to assure others in our community that it is safe despite the recent incidents we have seen. We are concerned about the disinformation we have seen in our own Jewish community, and we encourage people to be cautious before sharing something that may or may not be true. The best option is always to report incidents to the Jewish Federation by utilizing our Incident Report on our website or by calling 412-681-8000.
With help from a state security grant, we have been able to provide additional armed security at our locations that have requested it through November 30, 2023. This is being done in an abundance of caution, and as a deterrent. We have worked very hard over the past several years to enhance physical security at our locations, encourage people to report threats or concerns to us, and to train as many people as possible on Active Threat response. This year alone, we have trained over 10,000 members of the community. We have an incredibly strong security infrastructure in place, and you can and should feel safe participating in Jewish life.
Thanks for your continued vigilance during this difficult time.