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N.Y. Rabbis Perturbed over Strike of Gravediggers; Appeal to Mayor

January 13, 1967
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The New York Board of Rabbis sent a telegram to Mayor Lindsay yesterday declaring that it was “deeply distressed at the continuation of the cemetery strike,” which entered its twelfth day today.

The message, signed by Rabbi Edward T. Sandrow, president, and Rabbi Harold H. Gordon, executive vice-president, noted that Jewish tradition required immediate burial of deceased persons. They said that the “present situation wreaks havoc with religious sensibilities and emotions of families in darkest hours of bereavement.” The Long Island Commission of Rabbis charged earlier that the walkout had caused “a great deal of confusion and gross violation of religious laws and practices.”

Meanwhile, more Orthodox Jewish families are being forced to dig graves at cemeteries in the New York area affected by the strike of gravediggers. The strike has halted burials at 39 Jewish, Catholic and non-sectarian cemeteries. Orthodox Jews are digging graves to bury their dead because of a Jewish religious requirement for earliest possible burial.

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