With evidence suggesting that Ashkenazi Jewish women are five to 10 times more likely than other women to be born with a mutant gene associated with breast cancer, Columbia Universityís College of Physicians and Surgeons is preparing a booklet to help such women decide whether to undergo genetic testing.
"There are legal and social issues that a woman may wish to consider," said Sherry Brandt-Rauf, associate research scholar at the schoolís Center for the Study of Society and Medicine.
The city's Planning Department revealed last week that more and more former Soviet Jews are immigrating to the city not as refugees but for family reunification and on lottery visas, a fact that has been observed on the streets of Brighton Beach, Brooklyn.
As a result of these changes, Kenneth Gabel, executive director of the Shorefront Y in Brighton Beach, said his board has established a master policy committee to study demographic, service and market trends in south Brooklyn.
Observing that more and more grandparents are quietly paying their grandchildren's Jewish day school tuition, UJA-Federation has announced a program under which grandparents can underwrite not only their grandchild's Jewish education but those of other youngsters: at no additional cost.
"We really want to make what is happening more formal and to make it financially beneficial for grandparents," said Alisa Rubin Kurshan, executive director of Jewish Educational Planning and Continuity.
When the latest round of talks were held in Jerusalem this week to resolve Nazi-era insurance claims, a prominent New York Jewish leader was seated at the table. But he was not sitting with the victims.
"I came into this to try to come up with some basis to move the settlement process forward," explained Kenneth Bialkin, who earlier this year became lead counsel in the talks for Italy's largest insurer, Assicurazioni Generali.
Grandparents can now donate to UJA-Federation and in return the charity will help fund their grandchild's college education.
A recent change in Internal Revenue Service regulations has created a "flip unitrust," which unlike other trusts providing donors with immediate income for the rest of their lives, allows donors to defer income from their gifts.
The first 76 Jews from the Quara region of Ethiopia arrived in Israel this week on a regularly scheduled Ethiopian Airlines flight after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered an all-out effort to bring them to Israel.
At least 17 German banks and industrial firms have agreed to contribute to a fund from which payments will be made to an estimated 100,000 Jews who served as slave laborers during the Holocaust, the German government announced this week. Needy survivors may also be entitled to payments from the fund.
The government hopes the fund will begin making payments to survivors by Sept. 1, the 60th anniversary of Nazi Germany's invasion of Poland and the start of World War II, according to Elan Steinberg, executive director of the World Jewish Congress.
It won't be the Concord Resort Hotel we once knew (Jewish through and through) but it will still serve kosher blintzes and sour cream. The new owners of the Concord Resort Hotel insist there will still be a Jewish ambiance when the hotel, one of the largest in the world. It reopens the main building Oct.1 after a $40 million to $50 million renovation.
In the end, the fight over whether Reform and Conservative leaders could sit on powerful religious councils in Israel apparently turned on a Talmudic loophole. By a vote of 50-49, the Knesset this week adopted a bill crafted to keep Reform and Conservative representatives off religious councils, which dispense millions of dollars to religious institutions throughout the country.