20 Jewish institutions hope to raise $1 million for security

Posted: Updated:
DIX HILLS -

In the wake of the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre, 20 Jewish Centers across Long Island are banding together and hope to raise $1 million for security.

Rabbi Yaakov Saacks of the Chai Center in Dix Hills says the center has already replaced some of its windows with shatterproof material.

Visitors must have a code or be buzzed in to enter the building, and armed guards are present during Shabbat services and special events at the center.

Gov. Cuomo announced a $2.1 million grant for Jewish schools and synagogues on Long Island to improve security measures in June. The Chai Center received a $50,000 grant, but Rabbi Saacks says they'll need a lot more money to strengthen the security system.

A total of 20 Chabad Lubavitch of Long Island institutions have joined forces to raise $1 million to upgrade security measures for 32 of its Jewish centers.

Rabbi Saacks says the additional funds will go toward installing a double door system and hiring more security guards.

Chava Blitzer, a teacher at the Chai Center, says the stepped up security measures will help her feel safer.

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