As president of the federation of Greater Clifton-Passaic, I want to thank you for your June 24 article informing our community about the unfortunate need to close our JCC and sell the building. I think you portrayed the conflict and deep sadness that we all feel about this closing. However, I would like to make one or two clarifications and corrections.
When I said the Orthodox community lacked the “willingness” to support the JCC, I should have been more specific. I meant that this group has many other communal institutions that are very much in need of funds as well. I understand that the cost of day school tuition makes it very difficult to fund other programs. As quoted in another local newspaper, “At Young Israel of Passaic-Clifton, a congregation of about 120 Orthodox families, ‘many members belong to the JCC,’ said President Scott Goldberg. But, he said, ‘families had to make choices due to the rising cost of living and education.'”
We at the federation understand the struggles that families have in this day and age. We appreciate all of the support that we have received from everyone and look forward to continuing to work with all members of the community in a mutually beneficial and positive relationship. We will still be supporting Jewish Family Service and are hoping to expand our senior program as we move forward.
The other clarification I need to make is that The Holocaust Resource Center is not moving with Jewish Family Service. We have been working hard to find the appropriate home for this wonderful collection. We are close to finding space so that the books and information would still be accessible to the public, but until all of the details are finalized, I cannot be more specific.
I also want to acknowledge the support we have had from our longtime givers.
Your Jewish Community News editorial left the impression that they have abandoned the community. On the contrary; they have supported us through every step as we tried to keep the JCC as a viable institution. Many are still strongly committed to our federation as we move forward to redefine ourselves. I, personally, will be forever grateful for their valued contributions of both time and money and their deep-seated commitment over the years.