COJO of Flatbush Honors David Heskiel
A record setting crowd of nearly 800 New York City residents turned out Sunday morning, March 23rd to pay tribute to this year’s COJO of Flatbush honoreesat the organization’s 35th annual Legislative Breakfast. The event was held at the Kol Yaakov Hall and was led by distinguished Master of Ceremonies, Nachum Segal.
COJO, known for its commitment to help the needy and preserve quality of life in the community, drew elected officials, civic and community leaders and numerous Jewish Community activists to its memorable awards celebration.
This year’s honorees included NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio; NYC Police Commissioner William J. Bratton; NYS Senator Simcha Felder; NY City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito; NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer; NYC Public Advocate Letitia James; Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams; Kings County Democratic Chairman Frank Seddio, Esq., and other dignitaries from the city. Alsoin attendance were Councilmembers David Greenfield, Chaim Deutsch, Alan Meisel and Matthew Eugene; Assembly members Dov Hikind, Steve Cymbrowitz and Rhoda Jacobs; Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer; and Congressman Jerry Nadler.
Police chaplain and NYPD clergy liaison, David Heskiel, the Breakfast Co-Chair with Leon Goldenberg, was honored for his “relentless drive to help our disadvantaged Jewish brethren living in New York.” Heskiel, a newly elected COJO board member, was presented with an award by NYPD Chief Owen J. Monaghan. David holds the position of Sephardic Community Liaison to Councilman Chaim Deutsch, and is available by email at DH@davidheskiel.com to address any community issues or concerns.
Community Rabbis and Leaders
Meet with 61 Precinct Captain
Captain John Chell of Brooklyn CO 61 Precinct met with Community rabbis and leaders on Tuesday, April 8, to discuss safety and security before the Passover holiday. The meeting was arranged through R’ Admoni of Bnai Yosef, who thanked the
61precinct for their time.
Also in attendance were R’ Chaim Benoliel, Harvey Feldman, Principal of YDE, R’ Shlomo Cohen, R’ David Ozeri, R’ Eliyahu Elbaz of SLC, R’ Gad Bouskila, R’ David Maslaton, R’ Yaakov Ben Chaim, David Heskiel, Community Liaison, and Josh Melman of FJJ.
Assemblyman Cymbrowitz Fights
for our Yeshivot
Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz, who has always fought for legislation benefitting yeshivot and non-public schools, was instrumental in assisting the Sephardic Community Federation (SCF) and its coalition partner, OU-Teach NYS, to seize the unique opportunity provided by this year’s state budget and allow the Jewish community to take advantage of
In his “State of the State” address, Governor Cuomo proposed a $2 billion “Smart Schools” bond referendum to help equip our students with the technology they need to compete with our national and global counterparts, as current federal and state aid funding is simply not enough. Unfortunately, yeshivot and other non-public schools were not included in the original bond proposal.
Assemblyman Cymbrowitz felt that the current language would be “patently unjust to our tax-paying yeshiva families,” and he led the charge in the NY State Assembly to amend the proposal. He worked closely with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s office to add language to the referendum clarifying that the technology supported by the bond benefits all students equally – regardless of where they attend school.
In recent weeks, the bond act was the subject of a massive
letter-writing campaign in our community, spearheaded by Assemblyman Cymbrowitz, to ensure that yeshivot and other
non-public schools would be among the beneficiaries. With the help of the Orthodox Union and Sephardic Community Federation, thousands of parents signed petitions urging Governor Cuomo to change the language of the bond act to expand it beyond public schools. Happily, these efforts were successful.
If approved by the voters in November, every yeshivah and Jewish day school will see an allocation of up to $250 per student for technology, amounting to a total of $31,250,000 for the yeshivah and Jewish day school population. This “Smart Schools” initiative can help with infrastructure improvements to bring
high-speed broadband to schools, and with the purchase of classroom technology for use by students and teachers. Chalkboards can be replaced with “kosher” technology such as whiteboards, and schools will be able to go wireless and educate students using tablets (internet-restricted if necessary) instead of outdated textbooks and worksheets.
“I am pleasedthat the 2014-15 New York State budget includes so much positive news for yeshiva families and schools,” Assemblyman Cymbrowitz said. “Much of the good news resulted from collaboration, persistence and focusing on the goal we all share – helping our children and families.”
Is Fear Fair?
While it is certainly appropriate that children regard parents with awe and respect, is imposing fear a healthy way to get children to behave?
Associate Clinical Supervisor at The SAFE Foundation, Robin Shaoul, LCSW, states, “Children require clear rules and consequences to help them make decisions. By experiencing consequences in a consistent way, they understand that if they choose to make an unhealthy decision and disregard their parents, they are also choosing to experience the results of their decisions. Fear of appropriate negative ramifications can go a long way in helping children make healthy choices.”
At the same time, however, certain forms of fear can be harmful for a child. Wendy Lauber, LCSW-R, Family Therapist at The SAFE Foundation, says, “It’s natural for a child to worry that he not disappoint his parents, but it’s important for him to know that he is loved and that it is his actions that are being encouraged or discouraged. If a child feels that he’s loved unconditionally, he’ll likely be open to learning better behavior. In general, we should guard against having children feel ashamed, guilty, or anxious. The emphasis should be on understanding and improving.”
Project SAFE teacher Yossi Sirote says, “If you raise a child with fear, he may feel squashed and helpless. If that happens, he may search for empowerment in unhealthy ways, one of which is bullying.
“While it’s important to set guidelines and consequences for bad behavior, we should also educate them about the natural consequences of their actions. It is not the ideal for someone to make decisions solely to avoid punishment, for this may lead to making choices that are not necessarily the most appropriate or safest in each circumstance. We don’t want them to just do or not do something just because ‘I said so.’ We want children to understand why certain behaviors are undesirable.
“People feel truly good and confident when they are in control and are making good choices. That’s why we want toeducate our children to have the right information and to exercise good, healthy decision making. This is a much better parenting avenue than scaring our kids into line.”
If you or someone you know needs help, please call The SAFE Foundation’s confidential hotline, 24/7, at 866-569-SAFE (7233).