The recent rise in anti- Semitic incidents across the country has led many Jewish organizations to reassess their security arrangements. This has been true at CEEBJ as well, as we have spent the past few months working on how to best upgrade the security of our building. I would particularly like to thank our Interim Executive Director, Betty Lieberman, and our VP of Outreach and Engagement, Andrew Appel, for the many hours they have devoted to this critical project.
I am pleased to report that by the time you receive this edition of Ha-Kol, we should have our new technology in place, and ideally it will be up and running. The central feature of our upgrade is a video intercom system, allowing our staff to see and speak to everyone entering the building. This means that our new practice will be to keep the doors locked during normal business hours. Everyone entering will have to be buzzed in. Another key feature of our new security system is that the intercom can be answered not only from the front desk, but also wirelessly from dedicated tablet computers. These will be kept at other desks in the building, and can also be used by those in charge of evening and weekend meetings.
We will, of course, continue to leave the main west entrance unlocked during religious school hours, and both the west and south entrances will be unlocked for services and other large events. At these times, staff and volunteers are able to monitor entry into the building.
Instituting these changes will take some adjustment, by congregants as well as by staff. I trust we can all maintain our patience as we get used to the new technology, and the new procedures we will be implementing, and revising as appropriate. Your cooperation will be appreciated as we continue to work on our dual goals of maintaining a welcoming environment while also keeping our congregants, staff and guests safe.