Monsey, NY – Health Officials to Monitor New Drive-By Kapparot Ritual

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    Monsey, NY – The Jewish New Year has started, and Rockland health officials are planning to monitor religious ceremonies involving live chickens — including a new twist on the ancient rite by a man who wants to drive a truck filled with fowl to locations where people can pray, then take the livestock away.

    Rockland Commissioner of Health Dr. Joan Facelle said that no one from the department has heard from a Monsey man who has held large kapparot ceremonies involving thousands of live chickens.

    The man, Moshe Lefkowitz, has accumulated large fines and the drawn the ire of officials for violating sanitary code regulations while holding the ceremony at sites in the Monsey area in the past three years.

    He was fined a total of $9,250 for leaving the sites strewn with blood, feces, feathers and other garbage that attracted flies and maggots and caused the potential for disease. He still owes $7,850, according to Department of Health records.

    Health officials have met with Lefkowitz in previous years to explain what he has to do to comply with sanitary rules. But no meeting was held this year, Facelle said.

    “Mr. Lefkowitz needs to pay his fines,” Facelle said.

    No permit is needed, health officials said, but organizers have to obey regulations. Health officials will monitor the area to make sure that any ceremonies involving chickens meet sanitary regulations, Facelle said. County workers will also respond to complaints called in to the division of Environmental Health at 845-364-2608.

    Even though local officials are not aware of any large-scale kapparot ceremonies, several people have contacted the Department of Health to say that they were going to host smaller ceremonies. They were given guidance on how to comply with sanitary regulations.

    One person who contacted the department said that he wanted to drive a delivery truck full of chickens to various locations so people could perform the rite. The man said that he would then put the chickens back in the truck and go to a different location.

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    13 COMMENTS

    1. Kinderlach, this used to be a “free” country. Lately though it seems the rishoyim are working hard take our religious freedom away from us. Peta for one has been working very hard. Please anyone who believes they are altruistic – google Peta and see their history of cruelty. It is the old adage.. “kol haposel Bemuma posel”
      The flaw you find In another is the flaw you posses.
      Peta please realize the more you try to stop the Jews the more they will fight –
      WE ARE A STUBBORN PEOPLE!!!

      • This is the Dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.
        It has NOTHING to do with freedom of religion

        we take it for granted that its our right to do mitzvos. Around 30 year ago there was a problam with Tfilin, that a lot of people found that its was Glued togeather in a way that renders it Posul. When people asked Reb Moshe ZT”L why this would happan that some people found out that they never put on kosher tefilin, and he said, because People took it for granted, we live in america we have freedom so hashem has to prvide us with kosher tfilin.

        Samething here, we think we have freedom and rights, now hashem has to provide us with Kaporos NO, he will show us that to do a Mitzvah is a Privilage not our right.

        Also it has to do that we lost our metchlichkeit, and act like a buch of SLOBS. I see it every year thay leave the blood and guts all over the place, besides the fact of health, it stinks for days after sometimes weeks. Freedom of Religion is the right to practice your religion not the right to be PIGS.

    2. #2,

      I see nothing in Torah that would mandate violations of health regulations. This isn’t about religious freedom it is about obeying the law of the land and respecting the health of the community.

    3. to #3,4,5, you are all correct.. cleanliness is next to G-dliness.. I totally agree.
      I would not want to be residing near any of these places in general and for sure not if they left a mess.. But I smell PETA here.. I smell it real strong.
      So yes, please keep the place clean and sanitary I would be the first to advocate this but I know for a fact PETA is harassing places that do clean up according to specifications (thoroughly and responsibly) and still PETA is on their backs.
      I am not paranoid.. just reporting the facts.
      Gmar Chassima Tova to all of Klal Yisroel.

    4. to 2 – 8

      Granted Peta stinks. But I think its disgusting as well the way “some” (not all) of these kappara places leave.
      The place stinks for weeks after with feces and feathers everywhere. Its disgusting.

      Dealing with livestock is no joke, things have to be kept sanitary, during AND AFTER….

    5. Lefkowitz should be in jail for not paying the fines and creating so much antagonism towards jews by the disgust way he has conducted these assembly line sites for shuluggin kaporos. This man is the protype of the disgusting jew who makes is so much more difficult for normal yidden to be shomrei torah umitzvot. There is no chiyuv to use live chickens for kaporos and you can be yotzeh the mitvah with a fish or other even a goat. No need to use live live chickens.

    6. Many years ago I was driving with a Gentile business associate when we passed an area were they were shuluggin kaporos. This gentleman turned to me and asked what was going on….to keep things simple I said it was a relgious ceremony and the bottom line is that the chicken didn’t do too well at the end!

    7. Please, please, please, cooperate this year with the health department and let them help the organizers so that the rest of us Rockland Jews do not have to make excuses again this year for lack of sanitary conditions. Pay people to clean up the area, get rid of all the blood, feathers and feces and do not let anything go into our water supply. The mess they have created year after year hurts all of us residents and can be a danger to our children.

      Just follow the laws passed to protect everyone. I have nothing to do with PETA, but do want to preserve our quality of life.

      Thank you, and please do not call me an anti semite for asking for cleanliness.

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