Last week, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson announced final allocations for the Fiscal Year 2016 DHS preparedness grant programs, including the Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP). DHS has awarded $20 million to nonprofit agencies located in the nation’s highest risk areas to strengthen their ability to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from terrorist attacks and from threats posed by violent homegrown extremists. The NSGP awards constitute a 55% increase over the FY 2015 allocations, and will support target hardening and other physical security enhancements for nonprofit organizations deemed by Secretary Johnson to be at high risk of a terrorist attack.
William Daroff, senior vice president for public policy and director of the Washington office for Jewish Federations, stated:
“We applaud the bi-partisan congressional support behind the increase in NSGP funding this year and for the significant resources from this pool that DHS has directed to Jewish communal institutions to bolster their physical security. These actions recognize the continued risks facing the nonprofit sector, generally, and the particular threats directed towards the Jewish community, specifically. Only this month, the ADL reported on the dramatic rise in anti-Semitic incidents at home, noting the number of anti-Semitic assaults across the country increased by more than 60 percent in 2015, and the PEW Research Center reported on the increase in the harassment of Jews worldwide in 2014, noting that more than half of the incidents of anti-religious hate crimes in the U.S. (58%) were motivated by anti-Jewish bias. During the past month alone, the NYPD’s Hate Crime Task Force Unit charged a man with making terroristic threats and aggravated harassment as a hate crime against New York City’s oldest Reform synagogue, prosecutors charged a man with making a criminal threat against a Jewish congregation in Overland Park, Kansas, and the FBI arrested a man for attempting to bomb a synagogue and school in Miami-Dade County, Florida. The Jewish Federations have been deeply involved with the creation and funding of the NSGP along with many partners, including the Orthodox Union.”
The Jewish Federations, collectively among the top 10 charities on the continent, protects and enhances the well-being of Jews worldwide through the values of tikkun olam (repairing the world), tzedakah (charity and social justice) and Torah (Jewish learning).