ICJW and our U.S. affiliate the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) are saddened by the shooting of Jews worshiping on Passover and outraged by the continued gun violence in this country. NCJW CEO Nancy K. Kaufman released the following statement:
“Today we mark the 6 month anniversary of the shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, in which 11 Jews worshiping lost their lives due to a shooter who had no business having a gun. Unfortunately, we mark this anniversary in almost the exact same way — with a shooting at Chabad of Poway, California. We are heartbroken for the families, friends, and community who gathered to worship and celebrate the end of the Passover holiday.
“As we learn more about the shooting, it’s clear it will be investigated as a hate crime. Like the Tree of Life shooting, those shot today while celebrating the end of the Passover holiday were at the mercy of a gunman who shouted, “All Jews must die.”
The rise in anti-Semitism in the United States is nothing short of alarming. Hate crime incidents targeting Jews and Jewish institutions in the US spiked about 37 percent between 2016 and 2017, according to the FBI. Religious-based hate crime comprised about 20 percent of the total. The FBI data shows Jewish people and institutions were most frequently targeted, accounting for 58.1 percent of religious-based hate crime incidents. Muslims were the second most frequent target, at 18.6 percent. Add the ease and accessibility of firearms and you’ve got a deadly mixture.
“From Pittsburgh to New Zealand to Sri Lanka to California, no one should have to fear for their lives when they enter their house of worship. When one community is targeted, we are all targeted.
NCJW calls on the administration and Congress to condemn today’s shooting in the strongest way, and to take measures to help keep our communities safe. ICJW campaigns actively against anti-semitism around the world – check out our online resources here.
The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) is a grassroots organization of volunteers and advocates who turn progressive ideals into action. Inspired by Jewish values, NCJW strives for social justice by improving the quality of life for women, children, and families and by safeguarding individual rights and freedoms. More information on Facebook and on Twitter at @NCJW.