Hatzolah Meets With Sullivan County Reps to Prepare for Summer


sullivan-countyHatzolah volunteer paramedics sat down yesterday with state agency representatives for breakfast and a side order of understanding. The goal: coordinate efforts for the summer when the population and emergency calls rise dramatically. On one side: Hatzolah which operates in the Catskills year-round, but grow along with the bungalow colonies. In the summer, about 175,000 Yidden move to the Catskills and up to 400 Hatzolah members are among them.On the other side: representatives from local emergency agencies and the Sullivan County district attorney’s office.

About five years ago, local agencies and Hatzolah began breakfasting together to coordinate for summer.

What was once a modest gathering of people and pastries has grown to about 120 emergency responders representing more than 30 local fire, police and ambulance-corps members, and Hatzolah.

“This meeting brings an understanding of each others’ practice, a sense of tolerance of each other’s ideas and that you have to get past the stereotypes,” said David Cohen, CEO of Hatzolah.

Before these meetings, emergency scenes were chaotic. When an accident occurred, Hatzolah responded along with other agencies. There were many people, but no one was in command.

Through the meetings, local firefighters and police have also gained an understanding of religious practices, such as those that bar unrelated men and women from touching.

“When you get to know people, it makes it easier to come together,” said Jim Farrell, county chief assistant district attorney.

Hatzolah coordinator Bernie Gips hopes the understanding spreads to the whole community.

“We’re here to help,” Gips said.

{Times Herald Record/Noam Amdurski-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. So much goes into helping us have a safe fun and relaxing summer. We may just think that Hatzolah is a posute organization. That’s the way we see it but do we know what goes on behind the seen. There is no word to express mine and many other poeoples Hakoras Hatov to Hatzolah of Everywhere