As Flatbush Shomrim founder Chaim Deutsch took office on Wednesday, the NYC council now has two Orthodox Jewish councilman concurrently for the first time.
The councilman from Flatbush, a Democrat who served as the Jewish liaison to outgoing term-limited Councilman Mike Nelson, said the “vision” he had during his 22 years of leading the neighborhood security group culminated in his election.
“Tonight,” Deutsch said in a statement on Tuesday, hours before assuming office, “New York City begins a new chapter in its long and illustrious history. We now have our moment to write a new future. I have pledged to work hard and put the people first. At midnight, we begin the task at hand.”
Deutsch, 44, now joins David Greenfield, a Democrat representing the nearby 44th district, in the council’s Orthodox caucus.
Deutsch’s sometimes unlikely candidacy was supported by a deep coalition of the 48th district, which consists primarily of Russian immigrants and Orthodox Jews, but also sizeable minorities of Pakistanis and Chinese immigrants.
Chaskel Bennett, a leader of the recently founded Flatbush Jewish Community Coalition which coalesced around Deutsch’s candidacy, called the inauguration “a historic opportunity.”
“Our community understood the moment and united to send one of our most capable advocates to the City Council,” Bennett told Hamodia. “I am confident that Chaim Deutsch will be an outstanding representative for the entire district.”