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August 22, 2014: JCPA Speaks Out on Ferguson

06:15 AM Aug 23, 2014

Jennifer Bell, Rabinowitz Communications,, 202-265-3000

JCPA Speaks Out on Ferguson

NEW YORK – As protests continue in Ferguson, Mo., the Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) applauds the Jewish community’s sentiments put forth in a statement by the Jewish Federation and Community Relations Council of St. Louis and actively supports the continuance of efforts to combat racism, poverty and economic inequality.
“We join with the St. Louis Jewish community in their sorrow for the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed 18 year old man, and the pain his family has endured,” said JCPA President Rabbi Steve Gutow. “We stand with the St. Louis Jewish community, ready to provide the community support through JCPA’s national network across the American Jewish community. We share in the community's admiration for the public servants who have tried to maintain peace in their community - and the countless non-violent protesters who have stood for a just and peaceful response to the tragic events in Ferguson. The situation in Ferguson represents many larger issues - particularly the issue of racism - issues deeply rooted in the social structure of our society that must be addressed. There are no quick solutions. As Jews, our commitment to tikkun olam, repairing the world, includes working toward eradicating racism, poverty and economic inequality,” Rabbi Gutow said.
“We join with the St. Louis Jewish community in recognizing that ‘every individual, no matter the circumstances of his or her birth, has a chance to live a decent, meaningful life’ - and we share the community’s commitment to finding the political and institutional strategies to reach that goal,” said Susan W. Turnbull, JCPA Chair. “We cannot abide by the fact that huge swaths of our society live in poverty, with staggering unemployment - 50% in Ferguson.  JCPA’s mission statement speaks of our commitment to the ‘rule of law’ noting that the institutions of our government must continue to function as a public trust. When that trust is broken, we are all called to act, not only to better the current situation but to also prevent future tragedies like the one we have seen unfold,” she added.  

JCPA, the public affairs arm of the organized Jewish community, serves as the national coordinating and advisory body for the 17 national and 125 local agencies comprising the field of Jewish community relations.

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