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June 26, 2012 11:24 am

Nearly 1 in 4 Are Jewish in Brooklyn

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Congregation Kol Israel in Brooklyn. Photo: wiki commons.

Nearly a quarter of the people living in Brooklyn, which is New York City’s largest borough, are Jewish.  The number comes from a highly cited study released by the UJA Federation of New York in early June, which examined the demographics of New York’s Jewish population.

23% of Brooklyn’s 2.4 million residents belong to “the tribe”, making up the largest Jewish population in any U.S. county.

The percentage of Jews in Brooklyn relative to the borough’s overall population marks an increase from 10 years ago, when 18% of people living in Brooklyn were Jewish.  The increase is being attributed to the growing number of ultra-Orthodox Jewish families who reside in neighborhoods such as Flatbush and Borough Park, which commonly have large numbers of children relative to the general population.

Jewish poverty is also rampant in Brooklyn, according to the UJA’s study and other analysts who have looked at the data.

“Brooklyn is the capital of Jewish poverty in America,” Willie Rapfogel, CEO of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty told the New York Daily News. “There are significant amounts of poor Jewish children.”

Yeshiva schools, which are dedicated to serving religious Jews who prefer a Jewish education, are experiencing an increase in enrollment, and according to Assemblyman Dov Hikind, who represents the district of Borough Park, the political clout of Brooklyn’s Jewish community is rising in New York state.

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