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Saturday, December 27, 2014

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Jewish population booming in Brooklyn

Tags: International
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Typical Borought Park Street Scene [Wikimedia Commons photo]

NEW YORK — Two-thirds of Jewish population growth in the New York area has come from two largely Orthodox neighbourhoods, a study found. 

Two Brooklyn neighbourhoods account for a majority of the 10 per cent increase in overall Jewish population growth in greater New York City over the past decade, according to data released last Friday from a demographic study carried out by UJA-Federation of New York. With 1.54 million Jews, the New York area is home to the largest Jewish community in North America. 

The newly released data comes from a demographic survey UJA-Federation conducted of the local Jewish population in 2012. The full report includes more detailed geographic data on the Jewish residents in UJA-Federation’s catchment area, which includes the five boroughs of New York City, Long Island and Westchester County. 

According to the study, most of the increase since 2002 occurred in the predominantly haredi Orthodox Brooklyn neighbourhoods of Borough Park and Williamsburg. 

The number of Jews living in Borough Park, home to the Bobov Chassidic sect and several others haredi communities, rose by 71 per cent. In Williamsburg, the seat of the Satmar Chassidic sect, the population increased by 41 per cent. 

Other parts of the city also saw a dramatic rise in Jewish population. The number of Jews living in the northern Manhattan neighbourhood of Washington Heights skyrocketed by 144 per cent.

The Bronx, a former bastion of Jewish life that had seen a long period of decline, is also rebounding. The number of Jews in the northern borough rose from 45,100 to 53,900 in 2012. 

“The geographic profile give us essential current information so we can best respond with laser-like focus to regional and communal needs,” said John Ruskay, the executive vice-president and CEO of UJA-Federation of New York. “We, along with our network of agencies, area synagogues, day schools and many other communal institutions will use this data for planning to meet current and future needs of the Jewish community.”

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