In Response to the Shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh

The Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley stands in solidarity with the Jewish community in Pittsburgh. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Tree of Life Synagogue and the Jewish community of Pittsburgh during this difficult time.

Since the incident took place this morning, we have been closely monitoring the situation, we have been receiving and sharing with our agencies and synagogues security updates and we have been in touch with our law enforcement partners.

Our Jewish community and all communities around the world take the safety and security of our members very seriously and we prepare ourselves, as best as we can, to respond to different security scenarios throughout the year. Security is something that we think about constantly and not just when these incidents take place.

Every synagogue and agency in our community attends a yearly security meeting with our law enforcement partners at the local and national level to review our security protocols and learn how to best respond to different security scenarios. In addition, each institution performs security drills with their staff to ensure that they know how to react if a situation arises. Our community has performed several security assessments with the help of the Department of Homeland Security, and the local police and we have implemented their recommendations.

In addition, our Federation is in constant communication with our synagogues and agencies when a situation arises, and we share the latest information as it progresses.

Finally, we maintain great relationships with our local, state and federal authorities, we communicate with them constantly, and we update them when large communal events are taking place.

Our Jewish community is strong. We will continue to maintain a vigilant eye on our community, and will not be intimidated or deterred. We will mourn this terrible loss, but we will continue to attend services, we will continue to celebrate Shabbat and we will continue to be proud of who we are.  

A community-wide interfaith vigil will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 31, at 7 p.m. at the JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Learn more here. To make a donation to the Victims of Terror Fund to help our brothers and sisters in Pittsburgh to recover, click here.