A New Jersey jewish community center was evacuated on Tuesday morning after receiving a bomb threat.
The Betty and Milton Katz Jewish Community Center in Cherry Hill was cordoned off after receiving the bomb threat at 8:30 a.m., with all the children and staff vacating the building before police searched for a bomb, the Courier Post reported.
No explosives were found by investigators and the JCC was given the all clear at 5 p.m. on Tuesday to re-open.
"While we are relieved that this threat was unfounded, we are concerned about the antisemitism behind these threats, and the repetition of threats intended to interfere with day-to-day life," Jennifer Dubrow Weiss, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Southern New Jersey, told the Courier Post.
According to the NJ Pen news site, the Katz JCC also experienced a similar bomb threat five years ago.
Rep. Donald Norcross (D-NJ) denounced the incident, calling for increased focus on keeping Jewish community centers secure.
“Today, our community suffered the emotional distress of another bomb threat at the Katz Jewish Community Center. I’ll be honest – I’m saddened and angered,” he said on Twitter. “These threats have no place in our communities, and we must continue to find ways to help Jewish community centers feel safe.”
The evacuation of the building was aided by the fact that the JCC’s staff had recently received emergency training.
Oded Kraus, the center’s director, said that some of the evacuees were children in an early childhood program who were taken to an evacuation site.
Police have opened an investigation and are current looking for leads.
The previous bomb threat, which occurred in 2017, was one of a series of bomb threats received by Jewish organizations across the United States.