Assemblyman Cymbrowitz Calls for Improved Police Sensitivity Training After Sholom Emert Shabbos Fiasco


nypdAssemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz has called on the Police Department to reevaluate its sensitivity training in the wake of an incident in which a yungerman, R’ Sholom Emert, who was stopped by police officers from the 61st Precinct for jaywalking, was required under the threat of arrest, to write his name and address on Shabbos. Sholom, who wasn’t carrying his ID because it was Shabbos, pleaded with the officers to accompany him down the block to his residence, where he could produce ID.”What happened last Friday evening is inexcusable. The officers had an obligation to enforce the law, but that shouldn’t provide them with the justification of violating a community resident’s religious beliefs, especially over such a minor offense as jaywalking,” Cymbrowitz said. “Every police officer has discretion and must use common sense in carrying out their important duties. Friday night’s incident could have been handled in a much more understanding manner. It demonstrates a need for improved sensitivity training for our police officers.”

Cymbrowitz wrote in a letter to the 61st Precinct’s commanding officer, with a copy sent to the Chief of Brooklyn South, “I am requesting that you work with your department’s training officers to reevaluate, in consultation with the leaders of New York City’s orthodox Jewish communities, the information that is provided to officers receiving sensitivity training and then restructure the course to make certain that NYPD officers are aware of the religious and cultural concerns of the residents of this great city. Once the sensitivity training curriculum is revamped, it is important that all officers, from new recruits to seasoned veterans, be required to take the training and that supervisors make sure that this knowledge is implemented at the patrol level.”

“Given that Friday’s unfortunate incident occurred, we must expeditiously do what is necessary to make sure that a similar situation never happens again,” Cymbrowitz concluded.

{Noam Newscenter}