Press Release

Following Schumer, Gillibrand, Lowey Push, FEMA And NYS DHSES Lead Security Grant Workshop To Aid Nonprofit Applicants

Feb 27, 2020

Washington, DC  — U.S. Senate Democratic Leader Charles E. Schumer, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, and House of Representatives Appropriations Chairwoman Nita Lowey announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) led a workshop to aid faith-based, community, and nonprofit organizations in applying for funding through the Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) in Rockland County. This workshop followed Schumer, Gillibrand, and Lowey’s request for FEMA and NYS DHSES to work directly with New York communities, shaken by hate crimes, through public forums to facilitate grant applications. 

“It’s a good step that the federal and state governments heeded our call to work directly with local applicants in Rockland County to aid in the Nonprofit Security Grant Program application process. Rockland County community members should not feel vulnerable while gathering in their houses of worship, while dropping their kids off at school, or while heading to the local JCC or any other faith-based community center,” said U.S. Senator Charles Schumer. “We must confront the rise in anti-Semitism and other hate crimes head-on, not to mention the persistent threat of terror attacks. That’s why I worked so hard to deliver a significant increase in funds for this vital program.”

“I’m pleased that faith-based, community, and nonprofit organizations in New York will get the support they deserve,” said Senator Gillibrand. “In recent years, the Jewish community in New York and across the country has too often come under attack from anti-Semitic violence. No one — from any community — should fear being targeted for their religious beliefs, traditions, and culture. I’m glad the government heeded our call for NSGP workshops, so that vulnerable communities will be able to protect themselves and their loved ones.”

“In 2018, I established this nonprofit security grant program for those outside of designated Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) jurisdictions deemed to be at high risk of a terrorist attack,” said Chairwoman Lowey. “Two faith-based organizations in Rockland won federal grants so far. This year, I took the lead in increasing the program funding from $10 million to $40 million nationwide. In the wake of the recent stabbing in Monsey, we want all non-profits to know how to submit applications. I thank FEMA and NYS DHSES for participating and look forward to their continued assistance in ensuring these federal dollars make it to our most vulnerable communities across the Lower Hudson Valley.”

In the wake of the December 28, 2019, anti-Semitic attack in Monsey, communities in New York State amplified their previous calls for additional funding to ensure that nonprofit organizations such as schools, churches, and synagogues are protected. Many community members voiced concerns that they felt vulnerable in their houses of worship or at their faith-based community centers, and feared sending their children to school. Furthermore, organizations throughout New York, including houses of worship, schools, and faith-based community centers, reached out to their federal representatives’ district offices with questions regarding the federal NSGP application. 

The workshop helped nonprofit organizations apply for Nonprofit Security Grant Program funding; representatives from the federal and state agencies explained the application process and offered tips for submitting NSGP funding applications. Schumer, Gillibrand, and Lowey have long advocated for the robust funding of the Nonprofit Security Grant Program. As part of the recent bipartisan spending agreement, they have delivered $90 million for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program — a $30 million increase. 

The Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) helps nonprofits, like churches and synagogues, prepare for and mitigate against a potential terrorist attack by providing critical funding to support physical security enhancements to locations that are at high risk of a terrorist attack. This program has improved efforts to keep at-risk nonprofit organizations safe by promoting emergency preparedness coordination and collaboration activities between public and private community representatives, as well as with state and local government agencies. Synagogues, churches, mosques, schools and other faith-based community centers, like JCCs, are just a few examples of nonprofit organizations that can apply for NSGP funds.