By COLlive reporter
Masks must be worn at all times at the main shul of 770 Eastern Parkway, gabboim notified the public on Friday before Shabbos.
This new policy comes as a few Israeli bochurim learning at the Yeshiva at 770 have tested positive for Covid-19 and cases are alarmingly on the rise in Crown Heights and other frum neighborhoods in New York.
During the first wave of coronavirus, the main shul was fully closed off for the first time in its history to avoid spreading the illness. The community has suffered many deaths.
Once reopened, many residents and bochurim felt secure enough to openly forgo health restrictions such as wearing a face covering and social distancing from each other. This attitude has been seen in other shuls as well.
But with the rise in cases, Dr. Eli Rosen and Rabbonim have warned about residents davening in 770 Eastern Parkway.
“Given the recent developments of continued positive cases in our community, many of which are associated with 770, and given the inherent crowded indoor mixing nature of 770, we strongly advise that all people avoid davening in 770 for the time being,” they said, stressing that currently “there is significant risk of contracting the virus in 770.”
In a message to the community, Rabbi Yosef Braun of the Crown Heights Beis Din said, “The doctors have recently notified to avoid davening in 770 due to the high risk of being there at the moment,” he said. “The rabbonim fully support this statement of the doctors in relation to being cautious of those risks.”
“As to what the administration of the shul should do based on these guidelines, this also includes the possibility of closing 770 (G-d forbid) if that is necessary, unfortunately,” Rabbi Braun continued.
“There are other options on the table, as to how they can operate in a more safe way, that is under discussion with the Gabboim,” he said.
On Friday, Agudas Chassidei Chabad has announced that the davening and selichos in the Rebbe’s room upstairs in 770 will be open to a very limited amount of people.
“Due to the unfortunate increase in the number of people who have recently been infected with coronavirus, all residents must raise their level of caution and act responsibly in order to prevent further spread,” they said.