Peter Fahy: observant Jews can have a police career

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 14, 2009

Continuing his campaign to get more Jewish bobbies on the beat in Manchester, Greater Manchester Chief Constable Peter Fahy has declared that observant Jews could fulfil a police career.

After addressing Sunday’s Manchester Jewish Representative Council AGM, the chief constable said religious observance was no more an operational constraint than childcare.

Although conceding that “Sabbath observance could be more difficult”, he added: “We are able to be flexible and it is something we can work around with individual negotiation.”


Counter-terror plans under way

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 11, 2009

A counter-terrorism strategy aimed at encouraging Manchester’s Jewish community to report suspected terror activity is being developed. It may include opening terrorism reporting facilities locally in Jewish offices and a kosher bakery.

More than 30 people, including counter-terrorism police officers and community members, met at a closed meeting hosted by the Community Security Trust. It was organised by the Greater Manchester Police Authority, the watchdog which oversees policing in the region, as part of an ongoing consultation project to engage the public’s help.


Manchester rabbi departs

May 7, 2009

Prestwich Hebrew Congregation members have said goodbye to Rabbi Yehoshua Landes after 10 years of service. His departure was agreed last summer and he has begun teaching at the King David High School.


Manchester Tay Sachs screening set to close

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 7, 2009

The last screening for Tay Sachs outside of London is due to take place in Manchester next week.

Screening drives for the fatal genetic disorder have traditionally been run inside Jewish schools, paid for by the Tay Sachs Screening Programme. However, the charity, run by north Manchester-based doctor of genetics Sybil Simon, is due to close when she retires.

“For the past 20 years I have run it and fundraised for it. There is no one to take this over. No one wants to do voluntary work anymore.”


Get a (longer) life in Salford

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 7, 2009

A scheme is being piloted in Manchester to ensure that observant Jewish patients have the right to stay alive if they become critically ill.

The so-called Halachic Living Will allows patients’ religious beliefs to be taken into account in any medical decisions.

Under the scheme, patients can sign a legal contract to appoint a rabbi or representative who would then make life-saving medical decisions — in line with halachah (Jewish law) — on their behalf if they become mentally incapacitated.


Big turnout at screen tests

By Jonathan Kalmus, April 30, 2009

Over 600 Manchester Jews responded to an appeal to attend a bone marrow screening drive on Sunday in support of local leukaemia suffer Leora Kuhillow, whose story was reported in Community last week.

Such was the level of interest that organisers had to turn people away from the Hilton Suite venue in Prestwich. Separate men’s and women’s testing areas were provided in deference to religious sensibilities.

Organiser Lisa Cohen-Binder says that those who could not be screened could be tested at their GP or at a follow-up drive in south Manchester next month.


Cancer support service opens in Manchester

By Jonathan Kalmus, April 30, 2009

Chai Cancer Care has opened the first dedicated Jewish cancer support service in Manchester, offering counselling, financial advice and complementary therapies from a newly refurbished facility within the Heathlands care village.

Eminent cancer specialist Gordon Jayson, professor of medical oncology at the Christie Hospital, is advising the north London-based charity on the development of its latest satellite service — and its first outside the capital.


Police chief wants Jewish bobbies

By Jonathan Kalmus, April 30, 2009

Greater Manchester Chief Constable Peter Fahy wants to recruit more Jewish police officers.

He raised the issue when supporting Manchester Jewish Museum’s plans for a Centre of Tolerance, dedicated to tackling racism. Meeting museum leaders at its Cheetham Hill premises on Monday, he described its community cohesion work as “hugely encouraging”.


Museum piece from 10cc

April 23, 2009

Legendary seventies pop group 10cc have added an extra date to their 2009 tour to support the Manchester Jewish Museum’s 25th anniversary.

Original 10cc member Graham Gouldman has a special affinity with the museum, which his father Hymie helped to set up. On learning of the landmark birthday, he committed the band to a fundraising concert in June at the Prestwich Hebrew Congregation premises. Museum director Stuart Hilton reports that over half the 400 tickets have already been snapped up.


Manchester delighted with austerity appeal

By Jonathan Kalmus, April 7, 2009

Manchester welfare charity The Fed is experiencing an encouraging early response to its Pesach appeal, which in line with the times, has a distinctly non-glossy and low-budget appearance.

The charity has stopped outsourcing artwork to professional design companies, one of many cost-cutting measures. The streamlining is partly the result of The Fed recently gaining a government-sponsored Investor in People Award, which involves a year-long assessment process.