For the second time in two weeks, the Westside Jewish Community Center on Olympic Blvd near Fairfax Avenue received an e-mail yesterday containing a bomb threat.
After receiving the threat, which came in around noon, “We contacted the Los Angeles Police Department and followed our emergency protocols to evacuate the building. Within an hour the police had very thoroughly checked our building and gave us the “all clear” to re-enter and return to our normal day,” wrote Brian Greene, WJCC’s Executive Director, in an e-mail to WJCC families and friends later in the day.
According to Greene, the threat resembled those other JCCs around the country have received over the past few weeks.
The Jewish Journal reported, “Since Jan. 9, there have been more than 100 threats against Jewish community centers, schools and other institutions in more than 30 states. The threats have been a mix of live and prerecorded phone calls and e-mails.”
Last year, the FBI reported that Jews were the victims of 52.1 percent of anti-religious hate crimes. Muslims were targeted in 21.9 percent of such crimes.
“Unfortunately, this week a number of JCCs received bomb threats via email or phone,” wrote Greene. “We know that the continuation of these threats across the country to JCCs, other Jewish institutions, and Westside JCC is very disheartening. Yet, these incidents also demonstrate both the relevance and importance of the JCC in our community. At times like these the importance of coming together as a community is critical. I hope that you will join us at our many upcoming programs and events to continue to show your support for the work we do for and with the WJCC community.”