RESPONDING TO ANTISEMITISM & GLOBAL CRISES

STANDING UP
TO ANTISEMITISM

In the wake of the October 7 terror attack and the war in Israel, antisemitism — already on the rise in America — has been fully unleashed on campus, on the streets, and online. And we’re taking action.

Mobilizing our community and other allies to unequivocally denounce anti-Jewish hate. Helping secure 2,400 Jewish organizations and synagogues in the New York area. Forging alliances and building bridges of greater understanding with our neighbors. Calling to task biased media reporting. Fighting for the Jewish perspective at corporate diversity tables. Working with NYC educators to raise awareness of Jewish perspectives. Amplifying pro-Jewish voices on social media. 

We will never allow hate to stand in the way of living proudly Jewish lives.

Actions Taken Since October 7

  • Security: To strengthen the work of our Community Security Initiative (CSI), we’ve allocated emergency dollars to bolster security at 400 under-resourced Jewish communal institutions in the New York area.

  • On Campus: We’re significantly supplementing funding to 11 Hillels (serving over 20 campuses) to strengthen Jewish programming, support mental health, increase campus organizers, and provide legal counsel for students and academics facing harassment.

  • Social Media and PR: We’re funding pro-Jewish and pro-Israel influencers online, and pushing media platforms like TikTok to reduce antisemitic content and misinformation on their platforms. We’ve been in direct contact with the NY Times editorial board, calling out biased and inaccurate reporting.

  • Education: We’re leading the charge here in New York to actualize the White House’s “National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism,” particularly in the area of K-12 public school education, offering trainings on Jewish issues and creating relevant content.

  • Workplace: We’re providing training and material to DEI and HR professionals to help them understand the contemporary face of antisemitism. And we’re supporting Jewish employees in the workplace, ensuring that they know their rights and know where to go if they experience harassment.

  • Building Bridges: We’re reaching out to allies, asking them to show up at rallies and marches. And we’re increasing the number of trips we fund to Israel for influencers, interfaith leaders, and elected officials. 

UJA has allocated $5.4 million to meet emergency needs in New York resulting from the war in Israel.

  • $4.5 million to enhance security at New York Jewish institutions: Since the start of the war, antisemitic incidents in the United States have spiked by 388%. Given the significantly increased threat to Jewish schools, synagogues, Hillels, Jewish community centers, and other Jewish institutions, we are allocating additional dollars to the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York for the Community Security Initiative (CSI) to support physical security upgrades, increased security guards and patrols, and expansion of overall CSI capacity.
  • $725,000 to responding to antisemitism on campus: As anti-Zionist rhetoric soars on campus, Jewish students and Hillel professionals are facing unprecedented levels of challenge as well as emotional and physical insecurity. We believe that the single best way of combatting the incendiary campus climate is strengthening Jewish student life through our Hillels. UJA-Federation of New York currently provides 11 Hillels (serving over 20 campuses) with approximately $2 million in annual support. Now we are making further investments to:
    • Confront Harassment and Intimidation: $200,000 to support an attorney at the Brandeis Center for Human Rights Law focused on New York area campuses.
    • Strengthen Jewish Programming: $200,000 for new educational opportunities at the Hillels in UJA’s network to equip studfents with information and inspiration.
    • Support Mental Health and Wellbeing: $200,000 for mobile social workers to meet the mental health needs of students and Hillel staff.
    • Increase the capacity of the Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC): $125,000 to support the rapid deployment of field organizers to help students on campuses respond in real time to activists and protests and to expand ICC’s social media presence with positive, unified, and clear pro-Israel messaging.,
  • $200,000 to supporting community-based activities: We are working to promote pro-Israel voices in traditional and social media and funding Israel education groups to provide thoughtful content and facilitation about what is happening in Israel for Jewish community members.

OUR IMPACT

  • Our Community Security Initiative (CSI), a joint initiative of UJA and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York (JCRC-NY), helps secure 2,400 Jewish organizations in the New York area. 

  • Mitchell D. Silber, former NYPD director of intelligence analysis, leads CSI and oversees a team of six locally based security directors who are addressing the needs of organizations in the Bronx/Westchester, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan/Staten Island, Queens, and Rockland County.

  • CSI now has a full-time dedicated security expert to help enhance security at summer camps in New York State, specifically north of Westchester and Rockland counties. [Camps in Rockland, Westchester, Nassau, Suffolk and New York City will be covered by the existing CSI Regional Security Directors].

  • Threat Intelligence Analysts based at the ADL's Center on Extremism monitor streams of online antisemitism for New York-based threats.

  • We’re supporting the Community Security Service (CSS) to help onboard volunteer security teams at local synagogues and other Jewish institutions.

  • Over the last year alone, CSI helped guide 264 organizations to secure $49 million in federal nonprofit security grants.

  • The team completed 138 terrorism vulnerability assessments in the first five months of 2022.

  • We’re providing  loans to nonprofits that received security grants but can’t afford to pay for security enhancements while awaiting government reimbursement.

SYNAGOGUE ATTACK THWARTED

In 2022, UJA’s Community Security Initiative (CSI) played a critical role in thwarting a potentially deadly attack on the New York Jewish community. While monitoring the web, CSI’s threat intelligence analyst discovered a tweet threatening to “shoot up a synagogue.” CSI staff alerted the FBI and local law enforcement, who apprehended two suspects carrying a gun, ammunition, a large hunting knife, and a Nazi armband at Penn Station. What might have been a terrible tragedy was thankfully prevented.

Read an in-depth report on what happened that day in Vanity Fair

NO HATE. NO FEAR.

Almost four years ago, on January 5, 2020, we mobilized 25,000 people — Jews and non-Jews — to march across the Brooklyn Bridge under the banner of "No Hate. No Fear." The historic march and the rally were conceived and funded by UJA, and planned along with JCRC-NY. A parallel rally took place in Jerusalem, and nearly 200 organizations participated nationwide — including our senior-most political leaders from the state, city, and Congress.