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Holocaust to be remembered in new Tasmanian education centre – ABC News

Posted By on March 3, 2021

Launceston man Felix Goldschmied moved to Australia when he was nine years old, with his six-year-old brother.

He is one of just a handful of Holocaust survivors left in Tasmania.

"We came in a Jewish transport and were placed in a children's home," he said.

"My time during the Holocaust was not very nice, my relatives were all murdered, went to Auschwitz concentration camp, and my father was interred in a concentration camp.

"I could feel the bad times even as a child because I had to wear a star and walk in the gutter for a while, it was a pretty horrible time."

Dr Goldschmied has welcomed plans for a Holocaust centre in Tasmania, announced in Hobart on Tuesday.

"It's there to stop hatred, inhuman behaviour, discrimination, and it teaches us all that," he said.

The centre will offer education and interpretation for school groups, as well as the general public.

It will house exhibits and literature.

ABC News: Selina Ross

Six million of the eleven million European Jews perished during the Holocaust between 1941 and 1945.

The Nazis also targeted other groups, including people with disabilities and gay people.

"The crime of the holocaust was so enormous that it's left an indelible mark on society and I think it's important that we should all learn about it to prevent it from ever happening in the future," Dr Goldschmied said.

Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced the centre at the Hobart synagogue, which is the oldest in Australia.

"Tasmania should not be the only state in the country not to have a Holocaust museum," he said.

"Because the students in your schools need to understand what occurred in the Holocaust."

ABC News: Selina Ross

Mr Frydenberg became teary during his speech to the Jewish congregation.

"Ladies and gentleman, this is a very solemn occasion but this means so much to me," he said.

"This is an example of what we can do, to ensure future generations say 'never again'."

There has been no announcement about where the centre will be or when it will open.

Tasmania's Attorney-General Elise Archer said the state government would work with the local Jewish community to develop and progress the plans.

ABC News: Selina Ross

Hobart woman Pnina Clark's father was held in a forced labour camp.

Ms Clark said her parents carried through their lives the trauma of the horrors they had experienced.

"This centre that is going to happen is for the people of Hobart, it's actually not for the Jewish community," she said.

"It's for the people of Hobart to educate them and to let them know that the world can turn one way or another and it's up to us to which turn it's going to take."

ABC News: Selina Ross

Melbourne teenager Gabi Mayer, whose family is part of the Tasmanian Jewish community, said younger people needed to be educated about the horrors of the Holocaust.

"A lot of people [when I was] growing up just didn't even know what the Holocaust was, just didn't have that connection unless they actually knew a Jewish person," she said.

"The history is really important because it shows the struggles that the Jewish people went through and if everyone knows about it then it signifies that you can never do this again and we won't allow it to happen again.

"It really unifies the Jewish community with the greater secular community."

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Holocaust to be remembered in new Tasmanian education centre - ABC News

Sasser helps introduce bill to teach about Holocaust in schools – The Stanly News & Press | The Stanly News & Press – Stanly News & Press

Posted By on March 3, 2021

Theres a new effort in the state to require students to learn about the Holocaust.

N.C. Rep. Wayne Sasser (R-Stanly) is a primary sponsor for a bill that if passed would require middle and high school students to receive instruction about the Holocaust and genocide.

The bipartisan bill, introduced a few weeks ago as House Bill 69 by Sasser along with Reps. Julia Howard (R-District 77), Jeffrey Elmore (R-District 94) and Robert Reives (D-District 54), requires that Holocaust education be included in the states Standard Course of Study.

This would mean thatinstruction regarding the Holocaust and genocide would also be included in social studies classes, English classes and other subjects where Holocaust education would likely be discussed. The bill, which also offers a Holocaust Studies elective for students to take, invites the North Carolina Council on the Holocaust to help with implementing the curriculum.

The Holocaust was the systematic murder by the Nazis and their allies of more than 6 million European Jews and others before and during World War II.

Its not about religion or any focus on what one group thinks, its just about history, Sasser said about the bill, noting that genocides which are the deliberate killings of a large number of people from a particular nation or ethnic group are still occurring today across the world.

Wayne Sasser

A former history major, Sasser enjoys reading about the past and about different cultures, especially former president Andrew Jackson and the Lakota people, a Native American tribe out west in North and South Dakota.

The Gizella Abramson Holocaust Education Act is named after a Polish-born Holocaust survivor who relocated to Raleigh. Before she died in 2011, Abramson spoke at schools about the Holocaust.

With more and more Holocaust survivors and World War II veterans dying each year, it can be really easy to forget about that part of history, Sasser said, which makes educating young people about it all the more important.

Its about being a decent human being, Sasser said about the need for more Holocaust and genocide education.

The same legislation was passed by the House in 2019, but was never acted on in the Senate. It was included as part of the state budget approved by lawmakers, but vetoed by Gov. Roy Cooper.

The bill currently sits in the Committee on Education-K-12. Sasser is not aware of a companion bill in the Senate.

Chris Miller has been with the SNAP since January 2019. He is a graduate of NC State and received his Master's in Journalism from the University of Maryland. He previously wrote for the Capital News Service in Annapolis, where many of his stories on immigration and culture were published in national papers via the AP wire.

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Sasser helps introduce bill to teach about Holocaust in schools - The Stanly News & Press | The Stanly News & Press - Stanly News & Press

Synagogue service times: Week of February 26 | Synagogues – Cleveland Jewish News

Posted By on March 3, 2021


AGUDATH BNAI ISRAEL: Meister Road at Pole Ave., Lorain. Mark Jaffee, Ritual Director. SAT. Shabbat Morning (Zoom) 10:30 a.m. 440-282-3307.

BETH EL CONGREGATION: 750 White Pond Dr., Akron. Rabbi Elyssa Austerklein, Hazzan Matthew Austerklein. FRI. Shacharit (Zoom) 7:30 a.m., Purim Suess-tacular (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.; SAT. Shabbat Service (Facebook) 10 a.m.; SUN. Shacharit (Facebook) 8:45 a.m.; WED. Shacharit (Zoom) 7:30 a.m. 330-864-2105.

BNAI JESHURUN-Temple on the Heights: 27501 Fairmount Blvd., Pepper Pike. Rabbis Stephen Weiss and Hal Rudin-Luria; Stanley J. Schachter, Rabbi Emeritus; Cantor Aaron Shifman. All services held via Zoom or livestream unless otherwise noted. FRI. Morning service with Megillah reading 7 a.m.; SAT. Morning service 9 a.m., Evening service 6 p.m.; SUN. Morning service 8 a.m., Evening service 6 p.m.; MON.-FRI. Morning service 7:15 a.m., Evening service 6 p.m. 216-831-6555.

PARK SYNAGOGUE-Anshe Emeth Beth Tefilo Cong.: Park MAIN 3300 Mayfield Road, Cleveland Heights; Park EAST 27500 Shaker Blvd., Pepper Pike. Rabbi Joshua Hoffer Skoff, Rabbi Sharon Y. Marcus, Milton B. Rube, Rabbi-in-Residence, Cantor Misha Pisman. FRI. Morning service and Megillah reading (Zoom) 7:30 a.m., Erev Shabbat service (Zoom) 6 p.m.; SAT. Shabbat morning service (Zoom) 10:10 a.m., Shabbat evening service (Zoom) 6 p.m.; SUN. Morning service (Zoom) 8:30 a.m., Evening service (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.; MON.-THURS. Morning service (Zoom) 7:30 a.m., Evening service (Zoom) 6 p.m. 216-371-2244; TDD# 216-371-8579.

SHAAREY TIKVAH: 26811 Fairmount Blvd., Beachwood. Rabbi Scott B. Roland; Gary Paller, Cantor Emeritus. Contact the synagogue for livestream and Zoom information. FRI. Kabbalat Shabbat (Zoom) 5 p.m.; SAT. Shabbat (livestream or in-person, registration required) 9:30 a.m., Havdalah (Zoom) 6:50 p.m. 216-765-8300.

BETH EL-The Heights Synagogue, an Independent Minyan: 3246 Desota Ave., Cleveland Heights. Rabbi Michael Ungar; Rabbi Moshe Adler, Rabbi Emeritus. SAT. Shabbat morning service (Zoom) 10 a.m.; THURS. Weekday Maariv 7:30 p.m. 216-320-9667.

MONTEFIORE: One David N. Myers Parkway., Beachwood. Services in Montefiore Maltz Chapel. Rabbi Akiva Feinstein; Cantor Gary Paller. FRI. 3:30 p.m.; SAT. Service 10:30 a.m. 216-360-9080.

THE SHUL-An Innovative Center for Jewish Outreach: 30799 Pinetree Road, #401, Pepper Pike. Rabbi Eddie Sukol. See website or call for Shabbat and holiday service dates, times and details. 216-509-9969.

AHAVAS YISROEL: 1700 S. Taylor Road, Cleveland Heights. Rabbi Boruch Hirschfeld. 216-932-6064.

BEACHWOOD KEHILLA: 25400 Fairmount Blvd., Beachwood. Rabbi Ari Spiegler, Rabbi Emeritus David S. Zlatin. FRI. Minchah/Kabbalat Shabbat 5:55 p.m.; SAT. Shacharit 9 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 5:55 p.m., Havdalah 6:56 p.m.; SUN. Shacharit 7:30 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 6:05 p.m., MON. Shacharit 6:50 a.m., Maariv 7:45 p.m.; TUES.-WED. Shacharit 7 a.m., Maariv 7:45 p.m.; THURS. Shacharit 6:50 a.m., Maariv 7:45 p.m; FRI. Shacharit 7 a.m. 216-556-0010,

FROMOVITZ CHABAD CENTER: 23711 Chagrin Blvd., Beachwood. Rabbi Moshe Gancz. FRI. 5:15 p.m.; SAT. 10 a.m. followed by kiddush lunch. 216-647-4884,

GREEN ROAD SYNAGOGUE: 2437 S. Green Road, Beachwood. Rabbi Binyamin Blau; Melvin Granatstein, Rabbi Emeritus. FRI. Shacharit and Megillah 6:30 a.m., Megillah 8:30 a.m., Childrens Storytime and Megillah reading 10 a.m., Megiallah 2 p.m., Minchah 6:15 p.m.; SAT. Hashkama Minyan 7:30 a.m., Shacharit 9:15 a.m., Youth Minyan 9:30 a.m., Minchah 5:50 p.m., Rabbis Parsha Class 6:15 p.m., Havdalah 6:56 p.m., Rabbis Gemara Class (Zoom) 8 p.m.; SUN. Shacharit 8 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 6:05 p.m., Shiur 6:15 p.m.; MON.-WED. Shacharit 6:40 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 6:05 p.m., Shiur 6:15 p.m.; THURS. Shacharit 6:40 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 6:10 p.m. Shiur 6:20 p.m.; FRI. Shacharit 6:40 a.m. 216-381-4757.

HEIGHTS JEWISH CENTER SYNAGOGUE: 14270 Cedar Road, University Heights. Rabbi Raphael Davidovich. FRI. 7:15 p.m.; SAT Morning Parsha Class 8:30 a.m., Morning Services 9 a.m., Minchah 30 minutes before sunset; SUN. 8 a.m., 15 minutes before sunset; MON.-THURS. 6:45 a.m., 15 minutes before sunset; FRI. 6:45 a.m. 216-382-1958,

KHAL YEREIM: 1771 S. Taylor Road, Cleveland Heights. Rabbi Yehuda Blum. 216-321-5855.

MENORAH PARK: 27100 Cedar Road, Beachwood. Associate Rabbi Joseph Kirsch. SAT. 9:30 a.m., 4:15 p.m.; SUN. Minyan & Breakfast 8 a.m. 216-831-6500.

OHEB ZEDEK CEDAR SINAI SYNAGOGUE: 23749 Cedar Road, Lyndhurst. Rabbi Noah Leavitt. FRI. Minchah 5:55 p.m.; SAT. 9:30 a.m., Minchah 5:45 p.m., Maariv 6:45 p.m., Havdalah 6:57 p.m. 216-382-6566.

SEMACH SEDEK: 2004 S. Green Road, South Euclid. Rabbi Yossi Marozov. FRI. Kabbalat Shabbat at candlelighting; SAT. 9:30 a.m., Minchah at candlelighting. 216-235-6498.

SOLON CHABAD: 5570 Harper Road, Solon. Rabbi Zushe Greenberg. FRI. Services 7 a.m., Megillah reading 7:45 a.m.; SAT. Services 10 a.m.; SUN. Services 8 a.m.; MON.-FRI. Services 7 a.m. 440-498-9533.

TAYLOR ROAD SYNAGOGUE: 1970 S. Taylor Road, Cleveland Heights. FRI. Minchah and Kabbalat Shabbat 4:45 p.m.; SAT. Shacharit 9:30 a.m., Minchah 4:15 p.m., Maariv 5:55 p.m.; SUN. Shacharit 8:30 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 4:50 p.m.; WEEKDAYS Shacharit 7:30 a.m., Minchah/Maariv 4:50 p.m. 216-321-4875.

WAXMAN CHABAD CENTER: 2479 S. Green Road, Beachwood. Rabbis Shalom Ber Chaikin and Shmuli Friedman. 216-282-0112. Contact the synagogue for service times.,

YOUNG ISRAEL OF GREATER CLEVELAND: Hebrew Academy (HAC), 1860 S. Taylor Road; Beachwood (Stone), 2463 Green Road. Rabbis Naphtali Burnstein and Aharon Dovid Lebovics. FRI. Minchah 5:55 p.m.; SAT. Shacharit (Stone) 8/9 a.m., (HAC) 9 a.m., Minchah (HAC) 4 p.m., (Stone) 5:55 p.m., Maariv 6:56 p.m., Motzei Shabbat 7:04 p.m.; SUN. Shacharit (Stone) 7:15/8 a.m., (HAC) 6:45 a.m., Minchah 6:05 p.m.; MON. Shacharit (Stone) 6:40/7:50 a.m., (HAC) 6:40 a.m., Minchah 6:05 p.m.; TUES./WED. Shacharit (Stone) 6:45/7:50 a.m., (HAC) 6:45 a.m., Minchah 6:05 p.m.; THURS. Shacharit (Stone) 6:40/7:50 a.m., (HAC) 6:40 a.m., Minchah 6:05 p.m.; FRI. Shacharit (Stone) 6:45/7:50 a.m., (HAC) 6:45 a.m., Minchah 6:05 p.m. 216-382-5740.

ZICHRON CHAIM: 2203 S. Green Road, Beachwood. Rabbi Moshe Garfunkel. DAILY 6 a.m., 6:45 a.m. 216-291-5000.

KOL HALEV (Clevelands Reconstructionist Community): The Ratner School. 27575 Shaker Blvd., Pepper Pike. Rabbi Steve Segar. FRI. Kabbalat Shabbat (Zoom) 6 p.m.; SAT. Musical Shabbat Service (Zoom) 10:30 a.m., Teen Movie Night (Zoom) 7 p.m.; SUN. Mindful Jewish Practice (Zoom) 11:30 a.m.; WED. Schmooze with the Rabbi (Zoom) 9:15 a.m. 216-320-1498.

AM SHALOM of Lake County: 7599 Center St., Mentor. Spiritual Director Renee Blau; Assistant Spiritual Director Elise Aitken. 440-255-1544.

ANSHE CHESED FAIRMOUNT TEMPLE: 23737 Fairmount Blvd., Beachwood. Rabbis Robert Nosanchuk and Joshua Caruso; Cantor Vladimir Lapin; Cantor Laureate Sarah J. Sager. FRI. Shabbat evening service (livestream or Zoom) 6:15 p.m.; SAT. Torah Study (Zoom) 9:15 a.m. 216-464-1330.

BETH ISRAEL-The West Temple: 14308 Triskett Road, Cleveland. Rabbi Enid Lader. Alan Lettofsky, Rabbi Emeritus. FRI. Service (Zoom) 7:30 p.m.; SAT. Torah Study (Zoom) 9:30 a.m., Morning service (Zoom) 11 a.m. 216-941-8882.

BETH SHALOM: 50 Division St., Hudson. Rabbi Michael Ross. FRI. Purim Service and Megillah reading 7:30 p.m. 330-656-1800.

BNAI ABRAHAM-The Elyria Temple: 530 Gulf Road, Elyria. Rabbi Lauren Werber. FRI. Shabbat Purim Celebration service (Zoom) 7:15 p.m. 440-366-1171.

SUBURBAN TEMPLE-KOL AMI: 22401 Chagrin Blvd., Beachwood. Rabbi Allison Bergman Vann. FRI. Laugh-a-lot Shabbat Service (Zoom) 6 p.m.; 216-991-0700.

TEMPLE EMANU EL: 4545 Brainard Road, Orange. Rabbi Steven L. Denker; Cantor David R. Malecki; Daniel A. Roberts, Rabbi Emeritus. FRI. Shabbat service (Zoom & Facebook Live) 6:15 p.m.; SAT. Torah study (Zoom) 9 a.m. 216-454-1300.

TEMPLE ISRAEL: 91 Springside Drive, Akron. Rabbi Josh Brown. Cantor Kathy Fromson. FRI. Online Shabbat Service 6:15 p.m.; SAT. Online Torah Study 9 a.m. 330-665-2000,

TEMPLE ISRAEL NER TAMID: 1732 Lander Road, Mayfield Heights. Rabbi Matthew J. Eisenberg, D.D.; Frederick A. Eisenberg, D.D., Founding Rabbi Emeritus; Cantorial Soloist Rachel Eisenberg. FRI. Evening service (Facebook and YouTube streaming) 7:30 p.m. 440-473-5120.

THE TEMPLE-TIFERETH ISRAEL: 26000 Shaker Blvd., Beachwood. Senior Rabbi Jonathan Cohen; Rabbis Yael Dadoun, Roger C. Klein and Stacy Schlein; Cantor Kathryn Wolfe Sebo. Contact the synagogue for livestream and Zoom information. FRI. Nefesh Shabbat service (livestream) 5 p.m., Kabbalat Shabbat service (livestream) 6 p.m.; SAT. Torah study (livestream) 9:15 a.m., Adult learning (Zoom) 3:30 p.m.; THURS. Megillah reading (livestream) 7 p.m. FRI. Tot Shabbat (Zoom) 10:30 a.m. 216-831-3233.

JEWISH SECULAR COMMUNITY: Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Cleveland, 21600 Shaker Blvd., Shaker Heights. FRI. Shabbat Speaker Gregg Philipson Dr. Suess Goes to War and Before (Zoom) 7 p.m.

THE CHARLOTTE GOLDBERG COMMUNITY MIKVAH: Park Synagogue, 3300 Mayfield Road, Cleveland Heights. By appointment only: 216-371-2244, ext. 135.

THE STANLEY AND ESTHER WAXMAN COMMUNITY MIKVAH: Waxman Chabad House, 2479 South Green Road, Beachwood. 216-381-3170.

This is a paid listing with information provided by congregations.

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Synagogue service times: Week of February 26 | Synagogues - Cleveland Jewish News

Could a former bar be one of Spain’s lost medieval synagogues? – The Guardian

Posted By on March 3, 2021

The rambling, 14th-century building that sits off a narrow alley in the historic heart of Utrera, its patio walls furred with moss and its inner ones painted pugnacious shades of purple and orange, has led a long and varied existence.

Over the centuries, it has served the Andalucan city as a hospital, a home for abandoned children, a restaurant and, in its final incarnation, a bar.

Before all that, however, it may have been the synagogue where Utreras once-large Jewish community worshipped more than 500 years ago.

After months of research and surveying, a team of experts brought in by the city council has begun its search for what could be one of the largest of Spains very few surviving medieval synagogues.

References to the lost temple go back to the early 17th century. In his 1604 history of Utrera, Rodrigo Caro, a local priest, historian and poet, described an area of the city centre as it had been in earlier centuries, writing: In that place, there were only foreign and Jewish people who had their synagogue where the Hospital de la Misericordia now stands.

The hospital was founded in 1492 the same year in which Spains Jews were expelled by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella after a century of persecution.

Thats the first mention we have, said Miguel ngel de Dios, one of the archaeologists working on the project.

Luckily, the building has survived over the years basically because its always been in use even as a bar. Its quite weird to walk into the building and see it painted like a pub. Its very colourful and makes quite an impression. But thats exactly why its survived.

Should a medieval synagogue be found hidden beneath the gaudy paint and multiple modifications, it would be one of the precious few medieval ones to have endured, along with the likes of El Trnsito and Santa Mara la Blanca in Toledo, the Crdoba synagogue, Corpus Christi in Segovia and the Sinagoga del Agua in beda. As some of the names suggest, synagogues were often turned into Roman Catholic churches.

The property, which had stood abandoned for two decades before it was bought by Utrera city council in 2018, has been divided up and repurposed countless times over its lengthy and eclectic life.

Weve noted three different phases in the building and have identified the walls and floors were going to examine to try to confirm the existence of the synagogue, said De Dios.

Weve surveyed the site and found walls that fit, walls that dont, and some odd things such as different heights between whats inside and whats outside.

De Dios, who is working with fellow archaeologist Roco Lpez Serena and the architect Antonio Jaramillo, is now searching for evidence to corroborate Caros history.

There are a whole lot of things that are always in a synagogue, just like there are things you always find in a church or a mosque, he said.

There should be a mikveh, or ritual bath, somewhere outside the prayer room and some kind of structure for the womens gallery.

And of course, he added, finding a menorah would be like turning up an ID card.

But De Dios is realistic and professionally dubious over some of the claims made about the as yet undiscovered synagogue.

If it does turn out to be a synagogue, well have to see what kind of state its in and whether the walls are the original ones of the prayer room, or if theyre later remodellings that could even have been built around or on top of the original walls, he said.

Id be very cautious about any talk of this being the second biggest surviving synagogue in Spain, but it could possibly be one of the biggest.

Utreras mayor, Jos Mara Villalobos, said the discovery of the synagogue could bring the city cultural, civic and economic benefits.

I think it would help us to understand ourselves a bit better by understanding Utreras past as a place where different people and different cultures lived alongside each other, he said. Having such a special building would also be an important boost for cultural and heritage tourism, especially as were only 20 minutes from Seville.

The search for the synagogue comes amid what De Dios sees as a wider attempt to connect Spain with its Jewish past, and look into the impact it had on our historical and archaeological heritage, on our culture, our customs and even on our food.

For the past 26 years, a group of towns and cities across Spain the Red de Juderas de Espaa (Network of Spains Jewish Quarters) has been seeking to preserve and promote the historical, cultural, and architectural legacy of the countrys long-exiled Jews.

In 2015, Spains parliament passed a law offering citizenship to the descendants of the Jews expelled in 1492 in an attempt to atone for what the then government termed a historic mistake. More than 130,000 people applied for citizenship under the scheme before it ended in 2019.

Its odd but its taken a long time for people to start looking at the history of Jewish people in Spain, said De Dios.

Its kind of been left to one side and more study and attention has been given to the Islamic culture that also left its mark here in Andaluca.

Isaac Benzaqun, the president of Spains Federation of Jewish communities, said the discovery of the synagogue if confirmed would yield another trace of the long and intense co-existence that came to an end in 1492.

Such discoveries, he added, reveal the social and cultural richness of Spains past while also showing the Jewish community the deep roots of our culture in this country.

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Could a former bar be one of Spain's lost medieval synagogues? - The Guardian

Frontier Airlines accused of anti-Semitism after canceling flight over mask controversy – USA TODAY

Posted By on March 3, 2021

As the U.S. surpassed 220,000 COVID-19 deaths, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new guidance about wearing masks while traveling. USA TODAY

Jewish groupsaccused Frontier Airlines of anti-Semitism after the carrier canceleda Sunday flight from Miami to New York overa clash with a group of Hasidic Jewish travelers related to mask compliance.

TheOrthodox Jewish Public Affairs Councilaccused the Frontier cabin crew of "bigotedbehavior." The airline said the passengers were deplaned because of a "continued refusal to comply with the federal mask mandate."

TheOJPAC, which shared video of the incident on Twitter, said the dispute arose because crew members ordered a Hasidic Jewish couple to deplane because their 18-month-old child didn't have a mask. Children under 2 are exempt from the federal transportation mask mandate.

The group accused the crew of applauding, exchanging high-fives and congratulating oneanother as the passengers left the plane. OJPAC said an Orthodox Jewish person defended the couple, and theirextended family who were masked began leaving the plane,"at which point Frontier ordered everyone off the plane."

Frontier disputed that narrative on Twitteras well as in a statement to USA TODAY.

"On Feb. 28, while Flight 2878 from Miami to New York-La Guardia was preparing to leave the gate, a large group of passengers repeatedly refused to comply with the U.S. governments federal mask mandate," spokesperson Jennifer de la Cruz told USA TODAY in an email. "Multiple people, including several adults, were asked repeatedly to wear their masks and refused to do so. Based on the continued refusal to comply with the federal mask mandate, refusal to disembark the aircraft and aggression towards the flight crew, local law enforcement was engaged. The flight was ultimately canceled."

The airline tweetedSunday, "Repeated requests to comply with federal law necessitated their removal from the flight. The issue did not stem from a child under 2."

"Some people in that 'group'are not even family related," OJPAC fired backafter seeing Frontier's tweet. "They are grouped together as Hasidim."

According to, Hasidim is the plural term for Hasid, a Jewish person who is devoted to "studying, contemplating, and internalizing Hasidic teachings."

Hasidim has been appropriated as acatch-all term used by outsiders todescribe several different Jewish sects based on their attire and other common practices.

OJPAC called out Frontier for not addressing allegations by people on board about the crew's attitude toward the passengers.

Monday, the Anti-Defamation League New York/New Jerseycalled for a "full and transparent investigation."

When asked about the allegations of anti-Semitism,de la Cruz said, "We review every situation where a passenger has to be removed from a flight."

Though some Hasidic groups in New York have clashed with officials over COVID-19 precautionssuch as wearing masks, that was not the case on the Frontier flight,Hasidic passengerMartin Joseph told The New York Times.

Were law-abiding citizens," he told the newspaper.We have small children. We understand that the mask has to be worn, and everybody has to wear a mask, and thats the law. We comply one million percent.

Contributing: Ryan Miller, USA TODAY; Joseph Spector and Jon Campbell, New York State Team


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Frontier Airlines accused of anti-Semitism after canceling flight over mask controversy - USA TODAY

Frontier accused of kicking Hasidic family off flight due to unmasked toddler – The Times of Israel

Posted By on March 3, 2021

JTA Frontier Airlines is facing accusations of anti-Semitism after videos circulated online of the airline kicking a Hasidic family off a plane because of violations over its mask requirements.

The family claims that its members were properly masked on the Sunday night flight from Miami to New York City, except for an 18-month-old baby, according to videos posted by OJPAC, an Orthodox Jewish advocacy group. Others who said they were on the flight recalled watching some people high-five after the family left the plane.

The airline says the baby was not the issue that prompted the eviction, and that adults in the group that was removed from the plane were not wearing masks.

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The Anti-Defamation Leagues New York-New Jersey office called for a full & transparent investigation of the incident.

Although what caused the eviction is unclear, videos posted by OJPAC show several Hasidic Jews standing in the aisle, all wearing masks. Multiple people say in the videos that the only unmasked passenger is the baby. In one video, a Hasidic woman says that kids briefly took off their masks to have a snack.

In another video posted by OJPAC, people said the airline staff high-fived after deplaning the family.

I saw them high-fiving each other, and high-fiving and saying A job well done to those Jews, one man said.

Frontier wrote on Twitter that the family did not comply with instructions from flight attendants.

Members of a large group, including adults, refused to wear masks as flight 2878 was preparing for departure from MIA-LGA, the airline tweeted. Repeated requests to comply with federal law necessitated their removal from the flight. The issue did not stem from a child under 2.

A passenger told Hamodia, a Haredi Orthodox publication, that 15 police officers responded to the incident. According to Hamodia, the flight was canceled eventually due to the incident.

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Frontier accused of kicking Hasidic family off flight due to unmasked toddler - The Times of Israel

Frontier Airlines Defends Canceling Flight, Says ‘Several Adults’ Refused to Wear Masks – Newsweek

Posted By on March 3, 2021

A group of passengers aboard a Frontier Airlines flight on Sunday refused to wear a protective face mask, prompting the airline to cancel the flight and remove them.

On Monday, several photos and videos of the incident were posted to social media. In some posts, the airline was accused of removing the passengers only because an 18-month-old baby was not wearing a mask. Others suggested the airline was guilty of anti-Semitism, as the baby in question was part of a Jewish family.

But shortly after the videos were posted to Twitter, Frontier Airlines addressed the incident in a tweet that stated, "The issue did not stem from a child under 2."

In an emailed statement sent to Newsweek Monday, the airline wrote: "Yesterday, while flight 2878 from Miami to New York-La Guardia was preparing to leave the gate, a large group of passengers repeatedly refused to comply with the U.S. government's federal mask mandate. Multiple people, including several adults, were asked repeatedly to wear their masks and refused to do so."

In one of the video posts, Twitter user Solomon Wolf wrote: "This is @FlyFrontier. Traumatizing a family and their little kids because a 18-month-old baby, who is explicitly exempt, wasn't wearing a mask. Before flying Frontier again, ask yourself if you want any part of this vile behavior."

In the video, one person can be heard saying, "Everything because a 1-year-old didn't have a mask," as passengers can be seen grabbing their luggage and walking off the flight.

In another video posted to Twitter by the Orthodox Jewish Public Affairs Council, several passengers can be seen looking toward the back of the plane, where a family of Hasidic Jews are standing. The council wrote:

"Disturbing incident the last hour on a @FlyFrontier flight as staff told a Hasidic couple to get off because their 18 month old had no mask. Applause is heard as the couple started leaving. Travels say on camera that the applause came from staff who also cheered that 'we did it.'"

"An Orthodox Jewish person spoke up in defense of the Hasidic couple. Then the whole family siblings and in-laws started leaving the plane at which point the @FlyFrontier ordered everyone off of the airplane," the organization wrote in a subsequent tweet.

Frontier Airlines' email to Newsweek added, "Based on the continued refusal to comply with the federal mask mandate, refusal to disembark the aircraft and aggression towards the flight crew, local law enforcement was engaged. The flight was ultimately canceled. Frontier Airlines and U.S. government policy mandate that all passengers over the age of two, other than those with a recognized ADA disability that prevents them from wearing a mask, must wear a mask while onboard an aircraft."

While the age of the child shown in the videos is unclear, Frontier Airlines' COVID-19 policies state that children under the age of two are not required to wear face masks.

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Frontier Airlines Defends Canceling Flight, Says 'Several Adults' Refused to Wear Masks - Newsweek

Partnership forged in measles outbreak: Rockland and Refuah tackle COVID-19 vaccinations – The Journal News

Posted By on March 3, 2021

Seniors who signed up on Rockland County's waiting list get Covid-19 vaccine shots March 1, 2021. Refuah Health Center, Good Samaritan Hospital and the Rockland County Office for the Aging worked together to vaccinate 280 seniors. Rockland/Westchester Journal News

POMONA With so many seniors in Rockland County waitingfor their shot at a COVID-19 vaccine, the county and Refuah Health Center teamed up on Monday.

This week and last, Refuah, a federally qualified health center, received considerably more COVID-19 vaccine doses for its two Ramapo clinics 2,000 each week than the county health department's total of1,200 per week.

County Executive Ed Day said Refuah pitched in Monday to vaccinate seniors on the Office for the Aging's wait list.

They did tremendous work during our measles outbreak where countywide over 30,000 MMR shots were given," Day said. "They are true community partners who know how to get shots into arms.

The health center partnered with the county two years ago during a measles outbreak that was concentrated in eastern Ramapo and the Hasidic Jewish community.

A COVID-19 vaccine is administered at the Rockland County Fire Training Center in Pomona on March 1, 2021.(Photo: Peter Carr/The Journal News)

Refuah did extensive outreach, especially in portions of the Hasidic community where vaccine hesitancy seemed to be an issue. That included robocalls and town hall-style meetings, but also conversations with families when they came in for health appointments.

On Monday, Refuah hosted a vaccination site at the county's Fire Training Center for 200 seniors who had signed up with the county's Office for the Aging.

The county last week activated its Emergency Operations Center at the Fire Training Center for the first time in more than three years to help manage the growing list of seniors seeking vaccines.

While the county health department was using the Yeager Center clinic to administer vaccines to essential workers, county spokesman John Lyon said, the senior clinic was set at the Fire Training Center.

UPDATED LIST: Where COVID-19 doses are going this week

SEEKING MASS VACCINATION SITE: Lawmakers want more shots in Rockland

'ALL HANDS ON DECK': Rockland activates EOC to aid senior vaccine search

Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern also worked with the county last week to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to 80 seniors from the county's wait list.

"Partof being a community health center is meeting the patients where they're at," said Alexandra Khorover, general counsel and chief strategy officer for Refuah.

That included various mobile clinics in the last week of February.

Refuah used its mobile clinic to reach seniors affiliated with a variety of groups, including Konbit Neg Lakay in Spring Valley, Centro de Amigos in Haverstraw Village, the Suffern Community Center, Esther Gitlow Towers senior community in Suffern, Yeshiva Spring Valley and Monsey schools, and more.

Refuah also teamed up on Monday with Konbit Neg Lakay to register and administer COVID-19 vaccines in Spring Valley.

About 32 people were vaccinated Monday afternoon, and Refuah willset up another clinic later in the week to complete about 100 vaccines total, saidRenold Julien, president and executive director of Konbit, a Haitian community organization based in Spring Valley.

"Clinics like this help people understand that Refuah serves the entire community," said Julien, who serves on the board of Refuah.

Konbit and Refuah have worked together for more than a decade, Julien said.

"Refuah has been a good friend to Haitian-American community," Julien said. After the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Refuah secured and administered needed vaccinations for a Konbit Neg Lakay-sponsored relief team heading to that nation.

I want to give a special acknowledgment to Refuah as I know they have reached out to many community groups across Rockland and gotten folks vaccinated, Day said.

"We serve underserved communities," said Khorover. "People who are socioeconomically challengedand medically compromised."

But anyone who is qualified get a vaccination appointment at Refuah, Khorover said. They just have to "get into the queue."

Margie Mazzamorra of Sloatsburg was among the seniors who got the call to come to the Fire Training Center on Monday.

"Everything was easy," she said. "I'm glad to get back to my life again."

Turning to Khorover, Mazzamorra said, "I want to congratulate you. Great job!"

Ken Pollinger of Nyack gets a COVID-19 vaccine shot at the Rockland County Fire Training Center in Pomona March 1, 2021. Rockland County worked with Refuah Health Center, Good Samaritan Hospital and the Rockland County Office for the Aging to vaccinate 280 seniors from the senior waitlist.(Photo: Peter Carr/The Journal News)

Ken and Maureen Pollinger of Nyack also lauded their visit to the vaccine clinic.

"I've forgotten how many lists we've put ourselves on," Maureen Pollinger said. She even thought about grabbing appointments at the Plattsburgh International Airport near the Canadian border more than a four-hour drive on a good day.

"I'm so glad I decided not to go," Maureen Pollinger said after she and Ken finished their shots and their 15-minute observation stint.

Many pharmacies, health centers and county health departments have repeatedly said they wanted larger shipments than the state provided. Refuah is in the same boat, Khorover said. "We regularly request more doses than they send us."

The overall goal, Khorover said, is to "not waste doses."

Rockland residents ages 65 and oldercan still sign up to the Senior COVID-19 Vaccine Waitlist by calling the Rockland County Office for the Aging at 845-364-2110, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or going to

From Pound Ridge to Potsdam or from Pomona to Plattsburgh, The Journal News/lohud wants to know if youve traveled long distances to get a coveted COVID-19 vaccine dose and if the hundreds of miles were worth the trip. Westchester, Putnam and Rockland residents can reach out to David Propper atdpropper@lohud.comif youre interested in telling your story.

Nancy Cutler writes about People & Policy. Click here for her latest stories. Follow her on Twitter at@nancyrockland.

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Partnership forged in measles outbreak: Rockland and Refuah tackle COVID-19 vaccinations - The Journal News

Thousands of Haredim crowd Jerusalem streets for last day of Purim – Ynetnews

Posted By on March 3, 2021

Thousands of ultra-Orthodox Israelis crowded the streets of the Jerusalem on Sunday evening, celebrating the last day of the Purim holiday despite the coronavirus restrictions.

A mass Tish - a mass gathering of a senior rabbi and his flock - was held by members of the Gur Hasidic movement at Beit Midrash of their rebbe in the capital. The movement officials said the participants are all either vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19.

Large police forces have been patrolling the ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods of the capital since the morning hours in the wake of the possibility the residents would hold mass Tishes and violate the coronavirus regulations.

In addition, dozens of seemingly intoxicated ultra-Orthodox men gathered at the Bar Ilan Junction in Jerusalem and attacked police officers. One of the officers was attacked with pepper spray and needed medical attention.

Police said a large force had been deployed to the scene and was attacked by several rioters who violated the government orders.

"Additional forces were called to the scene and three suspects were detained for questioning, one of whom was injured during his arrest and needed medical treatment," said police in a statement.

It was reported that during the incident, Haredi rioters damaged several police vehicles.

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Thousands of Haredim crowd Jerusalem streets for last day of Purim - Ynetnews

Why ‘The Vigil’ is the first great horror film of 2021 – SYFY WIRE

Posted By on March 3, 2021

Considering their reputation as 'dump months,'January and February seem to have over-delivered on the horror front in 2021. We've already had Chlo Grace Moretz fighting chauvinism, Nazis, and airborne gremlins in the fun monster mash-up Shadow in the Cloud. And Nicolas Cage continued to embrace the genre that best suits his wild-eyed persona in the gonzo animatronic slasherWilly's Wonderland. Even the reboot that no-one really asked for,Wrong Turn, managed to breathe new life into the unfathomably long-running hillbilly franchise.

However, only The Vigil, which is finally arriving in the States this month (it debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival back in September 2019 and has been on other Netflix territories for months), can lay claim to being the first truly great horror of the year. Cleverly released to coincide with the celebration of deliverance from evil known as Purim (Feb. 26), it's also perhaps the first truly great horror to be so firmly entrenched in the Jewish faith.

As first-time director/writer Keith Thomas recognizes, Judaism has largely been an "untapped well" for big-screen scares, particularly in America. The most notable recent examples the Paz siblings' Cloverfield-esque found footage Jeruzalem and supernatural thriller The Golem, and the late Marcin Wrona's dybbuk tale Demon all hailed from Europe. You have to go back to 2012's Sam Raimi-producedThe Possession for the last time that Hollywood mined Jewish folklore for frights. But hot on the heels of Netflix's critically-acclaimed drama Unorthodox and Seth Rogen time-traveling dramedyAn American Pickle, The Vigil looks set to bring Hasidic culture further into the mainstream.

Co-produced byJason Blum's prolific stable, the film centers on Dave Davis asYakov, a cash-strapped Brooklyn native ("I'm having to choose between medication and meals") struggling to deal with the recent departure from his Orthodox Jewish community. When offered the chance to make a quick $400 by his persistent former rabbi he hasto serveas a shomer and simply watch over a Holocaust survivor's corpse for the night to ward off any evil spirits the blatantly troubled man reluctantly accepts.

Unsurprisingly, Yakov's impromptu role as a shomer doesn't run as smoothly as he'd hoped. He has to contend with Mr. Litvak's dementia-ridden widow (Lynn Cohen, who sadly passed away last year) whose habit of creeping around her dilapidated house provides most of the jump scares. There's the mysterious cell phone interactions in which a malevolent presence impersonates both Yakov's psychiatrist and potential love interest. Oh, and then there's the small matter of a videotape which reveals the deceased had been menaced by an insidious demon (known as a Mazzik) ever since his escape from concentration camp Buchenwald. And it now needs a new host.

Thomas certainly has the criteria to make what's been described as the "Jewish Exorcist" (although Jacob's Ladder, Possession, and Angel Heart were apparently the key influences here). Before taking the director's chair for the first time on 2017 witchcraft short Arkane, he studied the religions mythology at a New York rabbinical school. Thomas also drew upon his experiences in medical research, and of nursing homes, in particular, when it came to handling Mrs. Litvak's Alzheimer's.

Yakov's mental state is also a cause for concern throughout. As we see in several brief flashbacks, the watchman was traumatized by an incident involving his younger brother, leading him torepeatedly questionhis sanity as the night's events become increasingly disquieting. Does he really cough up a mysterious critter? Did someone or something genuinely capture and then send footage of him sleeping on the job? And is the demonic figure he's forced to confront simply designed to represent those demons he's been wrestling in his own head?

Thomas keeps us guessing for much of The Vigil's succinct 89 minutes, aided by a pitch-perfect lead performance that deserves to thrust relative unknown Davis into the spotlight. The one-time SYFYmovie regular (Leprechaun's Revenge, Ghost Shark) thoroughly convinces as a man racked by survivor's guilt yet still utterly terrified at his latest brush with death. It's a quietly expressive turn that mirrors that of his namesake Essie's inThe Babadook another psychological chiller about a grief-stricken individual haunted by a boogeyman.

It may be a clich, but The Vigil's inherently ominous setting is just as much of a character as those who inhabit it. Lit by nothing but candles, constantly flickering lamps, and Yakov's iPhone screen, the Litvaks' abode makes for one effective haunted house. Little wonder that Thomas grounds almost all the action there, only venturing out into the darkness of the New York streets for a wince-inducing scene which explains why Yakov simply can't just walk out the door.

Meanwhile, Matt Davies' bone-crunching sound design and Michael Yezerski's inspired blend of pulsing electronica and traditional Jewish instrumentation ensure The Vigil sounds as creepy as it looks. It's just a shame that most viewers wont be able to experience its visual and audio thrills surrounded by the darkness of a cinema screen.

Of course, the buzz surrounding The Vigil has inevitably focused on its Jewish angle. From the conversations in Yiddish between Yakov and Reb Shulem (the eponymous star of semi-autobiographical Hasidic Jewish drama Menashe) to the tefillin the former wraps around his arm in preparation for his climactic showdown, Thomas immerses his horror in the traditions and rituals of his faith. Yet ultimately its main theme, letting go of the past and moving forward, is universal.

It's slightly ironic, therefore, that Thomas' next gig is very much rooted in the early 1980s. Yes,Stephen King was so impressed with The Vigil that he tasked its fledgling director with helming the latest remake ofFirestarter, whichwill also mark Zac Efron's horror debut. The notoriously tricky-to-please author hated the 1984 adaptation starring a young Drew Barrymore. However, the resourcefulness and flashes of originality on display in what's turned out to be Thomas' calling card suggesthe'll be much happier the second time around

The Vigilis playing in select theaters and is available on digital platforms now.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are the author's, and do not necessarily reflect those of SYFY WIRE, SYFY, or NBCUniversal.

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Why 'The Vigil' is the first great horror film of 2021 - SYFY WIRE

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