We are survivor leaders from across the U.S. who participated in the recent Claims Conference meetings (“Claims Conference Facing New Pressures,” July 17). There is a huge disconnect between the work of the Claims Conference and what is reported in the press. In each of our communities, New York, South Florida, and Boston, we see the difference that the Claims Conference is making.
Much was so cruelly taken from us in our youth. Now, in 2015, all survivors are elderly, and many are frail. The Claims Conference fights for us and our well-being, negotiating relentlessly with the German government on our behalf. We are not beggars. We earned all that we get and more — in Auschwitz, in ghettos, in hiding. The Claims Conference has negotiated over $70 billion for survivors, but most importantly over $4 billion just in the last five years. It is the voice for survivors who live in poverty, who have no winter fuel in Eastern Europe, who are facing destitution in Greece, who have used up their savings in the United States, and who need more home care than their home governments can give.
The history of the Shoah is not complete as long as there is one survivor still living. We proudly stand in support of the Claims Conference as it works tirelessly for every single elderly victim of Nazi persecution.
Jehuda Evron, president, Holocaust Restitution Committee
Israel Arbeiter, past president, American Association of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and their Descendants of Greater Boston
Joe Sachs, Miami Dade Holocaust Survivors and their Descendants