Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) is delighted to announce the availability of a safe and respectful way to dispose of shaimos (books or other sacred objects which can no longer be used but may not be destroyed). The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has granted Beth Geniza Olam in Monroe, NY, authorization for the burial rights of religious articles recovered from cleanup efforts from the impact of Hurricane Sandy. This opportunity will also allow community members to bury other shaimos items during the coming month.

“Does anyone ever question what happens to their shaimos after it’s dropped in the back of a truck? They should,” said Assemblyman Hikind. “Last year we had a disaster in Boro Park. We were appalled to learn that box upon box of shaimos had been abandoned and treated with utter disrespect.” When Boro Park residents discovered the abandoned shaimos, they contacted Assemblyman Hikind who saw to its disposal at Beth Geniza in Sullivan County, New York, which is overseen by the Vaad L’mishmeres Hashaimos.

Between the holidays of Purim and Passover, Beth Geniza will dispatch six 40-ft. tractor trailers to Boro Park, Flatbush, Lakewood, Monroe, Monsey and Williamsburg to collect books, documents, papers and other religious articles consisting of paper, cloth, leather and wood. Shaimos items will be buried under supervision in upstate New York. Beth Geniza is certified by the OU (United Orthodox Union), the CRC, among others.

“With Passover just around the corner, I’m delighted to announce this opportunity to turn over shaimos without having to worry about its safe and appropriate burial,” said Assemblyman Hikind. “Thanks to Beth Geniza, hopefully we can avoid all desecration of shaimos this year.”


Monroe group gets OK to bury Jewish holy items




A Hudson Valley organization has been given authorization from New York state to properly dispose of Jewish books and other sacred objects damaged by Superstorm Sandy.

State Assemblyman Dov Hikind of Brooklyn says the Department of Environmental Conservation has granted burial rights to Beth Genizah Olam in the Orange County town of Monroe, 45 miles north of New York city.

The Jewish religion forbids certain holy objects from being discarded in the trash. Such objects, known as shaimos, must be disposed of in a respectful manner.

Hikind says between the Jewish holidays of Purim on Feb. 24 and Passover in late March and early April, six tractor-trailers will be available in Brooklyn and Monsey in Rockland County to collect damaged religious articles for burial in Monroe.