Sunday, April 11, 2010

Shaimos Dump

LAKEWOOD, N.J. — Environmental regulators in New Jersey are trying to decide what to do about an unlicensed religious artifact burial site.A rabbi coordinated the dumping of 2,000 trash bags full of Jewish text and clothing on private land in Lakewood during Passover. Orthodox Jews are not permitted to discard the items, called shaimos, by normal means.
Some neighbors complained, calling it an illegal dump. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection issued a warning last week and ordered that the site be cleaned up.
The agency, however, says it is sensitive to the religion's requirements. For now, it is allowing the bags to stay until it decides how to relocate them.
The rabbi is expected to discuss options with DEP officials next week. 
Read the full article here


  1. Indeed an interesting conundrum. As the frum population grows in urban centers the question of what to do with shaimos becomes more complex. There are B"H more Jews living than are dying so the amount of shaimos around exceeds what could be buried in cemeteries. We've been using our own backyard to bury shaimos in but after 33 years here even we are running out of spots that can be dug up anymore. And those in apartment buildings don't have this option.

    Seems to me that some rabbinic council is going to have to bring this up and deal with the modern phenomenon of cities with no room or not enough room for earth burial.

  2. in monsey 3 times a year they have "shaimos trucks" they come and collect your shaimos- only in monsey!