Toronto, ON – With the school year and the High Holidays fast approaching, The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) held its second annual Back to School, Back to Shul security awareness and planning seminars for Jewish organizations and community members.
The seminars took place at the UJA Federation of Greater Toronto’s Sherman Campus in Bathurst Manor and the Miles Nadal Downtown Jewish Community Centre, each drawing more than 60 community members and professional staff.
Joined by Toronto Police Service’s Critical Infrastructure Protection Unit, which specializes in improving lockdown and evacuation procedures of community institutions, CIJA’s GTA Security Advisor, Gerry Almendrades, led a lockdown-simulation training session followed by a discussion on security best practices.
“Providing foundational security training to members of the Jewish community is an important part of our National Community Security Program,” Almendrades said. “In partnership with Jewish Federations, we offer detailed security audits of facilities, protocols, and procedures to Jewish community organizations across Canada.”
The NCSP serves as the national security representative of the organized Canadian Jewish Community and works with local, provincial, and federal law enforcement.
Year after year, Toronto Police reports show the Jewish community as the most frequently targeted minority. Jews are 3.8% of the population of Toronto but victims of 28% of all hate crimes in the city.