Letters to the Editor
... input from forum participants


The LAFD Disaster Preparedness unit should cancel "mens only" CERT classes

EDITOR'S NOTE: The situation described below was easily resolved and is no longer a problem. LACP allows criticizm but only as a way to move us into the solution. The writer attended the classes she mentions and the Temple was informed of the following LAFD and CERT-LA Non-Discrimination Policy, standard since January 2001:

The LAFD CERT Training only conducts non-discriminatory classes.
Non-discrimination includes race, religion, gender, and group affiliations.
For full text of the Policy as stated to the Instructors, please read:


Feb. 11th

I recently tried to register for the CERT classes being held at the Hatzolah Jewish Temple located at 533 N. La Brea Ave.

The "Host" told me over the telephone that the classes were for MEN ONLY and I should not attend.

A month later as I attempted to enter the scheduled CERT class, I was quickly body blocked by the "Host" who lied to me and told me the class was full. Even though he physically would not allow me to enter I barged my way through and sat down anyway.

The LAFD Disaster Preparedness Unit was fully aware of their practices and still allowed the class to take place at this temple. They knew well in advance that there were no women registered for this class because they had all been told by Mr. Brenner the "Host" that these classes were for men only.

These CERT classes should not be held at a Jewish temple for MEN ONLY any more than they should be held at a KKK assembly.

The LAFD nondiscrimination policy, as explainded on the website, reads, "We will not schedule any class, unless the contact person fully understands that during the duration of their class, any person from any other class may attend a session at their location. Persons from outside that schedule group shall not be denied or excluded. If any host/ess chooses not to comply with this, their class will be immediately canceled, even if the course is in progress. This policy includes, but is not limited to, race, religion, gender, and/or group affiliations."

I have repeatedly asked the LAFD Disaster Preparedness unit to cancel these classes and they have flat out refused.

This is very bad PR for LAFD and for FEMA who funds the project.

If you can help with this matter, please contact the LAFD Disaster Preparedness Unit at (818) 756-9674 e-mail I believe that their Assistant Chief of operations is Mr. Terrance Manning (e-mail

Eagerly awaiting your response,

Elizabeth Aleman-Shryack
Los Angeles