Charlottesville's Jewish Community Expresses Concerns Following Rally Violence
Charlottesville's Jewish community is talking about its experience with neo-Nazis in the area during the Unite the Right rally.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Charlottesville's Jewish community is talking about its experience with neo-Nazis in the area during the Unite the Right rally. They say they plan to move forward and focus on safety.
At the Chabad House at the University of Virginia, members are feeling vulnerable after the weekend of August 12.
When a torch-lit rally turned violent on UVA grounds last Friday, the university Chabbad House had no idea it was happening. They say they did not receive a UVA alert before, after, or during the event.
Chabad House’s program director, Channa Mayar, says she would have appreciated some sort of alert, and worries about the synagogue in town.
"I feel safe. Maybe late at night when I hear noises, I don't. But, I feel safe. I am concerned with the synagogue. My daughter goes to preschool there, and you know they were there. They know where it is. They threatened it. So, that does concern me,” said Mayar.
We reached out to congregation Beth Israel, but leaders were not available to speak with us.
In a message written on reformjudaism.org, president Alan Zimmerman said he and armed security protected the synagogue after police refused to provide an officer during morning services.
Congregation Beth Israel started a go-fund-me campaign to help offset increased security costs, and money left over will go to social justice functions.
At the Chabad house, Mayar said members will meet with government officials on Monday to discuss what levels of security are needed.