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N. Y. Police Chief Refuses to Exempt Jewish Policemen on Yom Kippur

Police Commissioner Stephen Kennedy stood pat today on his refusal to give blanket exemption from duty to the 1, 300 Jewish members of the New York police force for Yom Kippur.

Commissioner Kennedy responded to an appeal from the New York Board of Rabbis that such exemption be granted for Yom Kippur by a new order permitting only swaps of duty tours with non-Jewish policemen. It was by this arrangement that 355 Jewish police officers obtained relief from duty on the two days of Rosh Hashanah.

The Rabbinical Council of America, an orthodox group, appealed to Mayor Wager to intercede to obtain time off for the Jewish policemen for Yom Kippur, Rabbi Charles Weinberg, president of the Orthodox rabbis, said in his letter to the Mayor that his group was aware of the security problems presented by the current United Nations General Assembly which brought Commissioner Kennedy’s mobilization order for the 23, 000-man police force,

“Even during the darkest days of World War II provision was always made for Jewish servicemen in the front lines to be relieved for Yom Kippur,” Rabbi Weinberg asserted.

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