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Volume 13, Number 38
October 04, 2010

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In This Issue
Fighting Poverty With Faith
Iran Initiative
Israel Advocacy Initiative
Civility Campaign
Interfaith Encounter
This Week in Washington
Midterm Election Guide
JCPA Programs

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About JCPA

JCPA Homepage

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The JCPA Needs you!  With a nationwide network of JCRCs and Federations and the strength of 14 national Jewish organizations, the JCPA is an effective advocate for the issues that matter.  Our annual Leadership Appeal campaign seeks to raise $200,000 in 2010.  We know you care about the JCPA and the work that we do on behalf of the Jewish community here, in Israel and around the world.  Your support is crucial to our success.  To make a gift to the JCPA, please click here.  For more information, contact Max Mulcahy at 212.684.9815 or mmulcahy@thejcpa.org.

We thank you for your generous support!

About Us

The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) is the united voice of the organized Jewish community.

For more than sixty years, the JCPA has identified issues, formulated policy, developed strategies and programs, and given expression to a strongly united Jewish communal voice. JCPA's has an unparalleled capacity to mobilize grassroots activism, through our network of 14 national and 125 local member agencies. The JCPA serves as a catalyst that heightens community awareness, encourages civic and social involvement, and deliberates key issues of importance to the Jewish community.

Our Supporters

Fighting Poverty with Faith Kick off
Join us for the Fighting Poverty with Faith kick-off conference call TOMORROW, Tuesday, October 5 at 3pm EST!  Learn about the mobilization and hear featured speakers Joshua DuBois, Executive Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, and Martha Coven, from the White House Domestic Policy Council, speak about the role of faith-based organizations in fighting poverty and how you can get involved.  And following the speakers, keep listening for Rabbi Steve Gutow's closing reflection.

The call-in number is 1-888-690-8774.

Fighting Poverty with Faith events are beginning across the country.  This week, we would like to highlight the San Francisco JCRC, who will be leading the San Francisco Food Security Task Force meeting on October 6.  The JCRC and this Task Force are working to build stronger networks, share resources, raise awareness and work on advocacy efforts to address hunger around San Francisco.

If you are interested in writing an op-ed for your local paper about the importance of the faith community's commitment to confronting poverty, feel free to modify this sample op-ed, or contact Maricela at the Coalition for Human Needs for a customized, personal op-ed.

Fighting Poverty with Faith is a diverse coalition of national and local faith organizations dedicated to cutting domestic poverty in half by 2020.  To accomplish this goal, we are working aggressively to focus new attention to the causes of poverty, highlight strategies to reduce poverty, and create economic opportunities.  The mobilization is led by the Jewish Council for Public Affairs.  For more information, visit www.fightingpovertywithfaith.com.
Iran Initiative
Minnesota Community Leaders Denounce Ahmadinejad.  JCRC Director Steve Hunegs, along with two other community leaders in Minnesota, co-wrote a letter condemning Ahmadinejad and the oppressive regime in Tehran. "It is our solemn responsibility to remind the world of the thousands of innocent lives needlessly destroyed and held hostage by Ahmadinejad's regime. Moreover, we are alarmed that Ahmadinejad, so obviously intent on defying the international community through his pursuit of weapons of mass destruction, continues to deny the Holocaust…and calls for Israel to 'be wiped off the map.'"  To read the complete letter from MinnPost click here.

New Executive Order Issued Targeting Iranian Officials Responsible for Serious Human Rights Abuses. President Barack Obama recently signed an executive order sanctioning eight Iranian officials for their involvement in human rights abuses.  "In accordance with U.S. law and the Administration's commitment to human rights for the Iranian people, the President has signed an Executive Order authorizing the Departments of State and Treasury to impose sanctions on eight Iranian government officials tied to serious human rights abuses against the people of Iran."  A press release on the Executive Order from The White House can be read here  and the details of the Executive Order from the Treasury Department can be found here.

Iran Proves it Must not get Nukes. Gary Greenberg and Arna Poupko, president and immediate past president, respectively, of the Cincinnati Jewish Community Relations Council co-authored an op-ed in the Cincinnati Enquirer, making the case against Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons.  "As the leader of a regime with one of the worst human rights records in the world - one that abuses its minority communities, threatens the existence of U.N. members and defies the international community by pursuing nuclear weapons capability - we believe that President Ahmadinejad has a great deal to answer for." To read the complete op-ed in the Cincinnati Enquirer click here.
JCPA/Jewish Federations
Israel Advocacy Initiative
Anglican Friends of Israel Responds to Unbalanced Critique of Israel.  The Anglican Friends of Israel recently released a statement in response to comments made by the Archbishop of the Church in Wales.  The Archbishop failed to address the Israeli experience in the conflict, Palestinian responsibility, and Hamas' continued anti-Semitism.  "'Now is not the time for one-sided polemic,' said Simon McIlwaine, co-director of Anglican Friends of Israel. 'As negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank proceed we need measured and responsible commentary from our leaders.'"  To read the complete statement from Anglican Friends of Israel click here.

Netanyahu Urges the Continuation of Peace Talks.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has urged Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority leadership to continue direct peace talks.  Netanyahu argued that both sides should approach negotiations without any preconditions.  "The way to achieve an historic peace agreement between our two peoples is to sit around the negotiating table, seriously and continuously, and not to leave it, because it is the place to resolve the disputes between us."  To read the complete statement from Prime Minister Netanyahu click here.
Civility campaign
Rabbi Joseph Telushkin and Rabbi Melissa Weintraub among speakers at upcoming JCPA Civility Consultation.  On November 1st at 2 pm the JCPA will bring major Jewish thought leaders together to discuss civility in Jewish life, what is broken and what can we do to fix it.  More information on the JCPA meetings can be found at the JCPA website HERE.  The JCPA Civility Campaign was launched in February 2010 to convene, inspire, and empower Jewish community institutions and their leaders from across the political spectrum to engage in and model for others civil discourse on the most challenging issues.

Professor Gil Troy Calls for "Blue and White" lines regarding Discourse on Israel.   In The Jerusalem Post, McGill University Professor Gil Troy discussed the issue of confronting individuals who delegitimize Israel.  He presented a petition which suggests boundaries in discussion about Israel including "denying Israel's right to exist," "demonization,"  and "double standards." The article can be viewed here.  
Interfaith Encounter
3rd Annual Weekend of Twinning of Mosques and Synagogues Around the World.  The Weekend of Twinning is an annual event to bring together synagogues and mosques for joint programming in cities around the world.  Last year, 115 mosques and 115 synagogues across North America and Europe took part.  This year's weekend of Twinning takes place November 5-7.  If you or your community are interested in getting involved, you can learn more here.
This Week in Washington
This Week in Washington.  At the end of last week, Congress recessed for upcoming elections.  The Senate will hold pro forma sessions, but no legislation will be considered.  Congress is expected to return for a "lame duck" session in November.  The Supreme Court returns this week for their new term.  The President is in Washington this week.
Supreme Court Begins New Term.  On Monday the Supreme Court will hear the first oral arguments of the new term.  Among the cases on this year's docket is the question of the right of the Westboro Baptist Church, to hold protests at the funerals of veterans,  and another first amendment case, Schwarzenegger v. Entertainment Merchants Association, about the right of states to ban the sale of violent videogames to children.  Monday will also mark the first day for new Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.  Because of her role arguing before the Supreme Court as Solicitor General, Justice Kagan has recused herself from 25 of the 51 cases.  

No New Child Nutrition Reauthorization Bill. The House of Representatives failed to pass a child nutrition bill before adjourning for the midterm election last Thursday. The child nutrition programs were set to expire on September 30th, but Congress passed a Continuing Resolution (CR) through December 3rd, which will allow the child nutrition programs (along with all other government programs) to continue working off of the previous year's level of funding. The House was in negotiations to pass the Senate version of the bill, S. 3307, but failed to reach agreement before they adjourned. The bill is expected to be debated and voted on during a "Lame Duck" session starting November 15th. While the next few weeks will provide additional opportunity for negotiations to continue, time is running out for Congress to pass a strong child nutrition bill before the end of the 111th Congress. The JCPA will continue to work for a compromise that will allow the bill to move forward while addressing our concerns about additional access needs and the SNAP offset, perhaps through another vehicle.

White House Names New Chief of Staff.  Rahm Emmanuel stepped down as White House Chief of Staff last week to return home to Chicago for a possible Mayoral candidacy.  President Obama named senior advisor Pete Rouse to serve as interim Chief of Staff.  Rouse, of Jewish and Japanese heritage, previously served as Chief of Staff for Senator Tom Daschle (D-ND) before serving as chief of staff for then-Senator Obama.
Join COEJL's upcoming Webinar on "The Story of Noah and its Relationship to Climate Change" October 7th at 10:30 AM EST. Space is limited so please register today here. Speakers for the webinar are: Rabbi Saul J. Berman, Stern College Professor and Orthodox rabbi; Ken Mankoff, scientist and public speaker formerly of Columbia University NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and the Colorado Boulder Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics; and Dina Kruger, Director of EPA's Climate Change Division. The webinar will be open to the general public but focused on the Jewish communities and their leadership. Registration is required.

COEJL and Hazon in a day of action on 10/10/10! COEJL and Hazon are teaming up the No Impact Project (http://noimpactproject.org) for 350.org's 10/10/10 Global Work Party initiative. We will be working together with New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) on the NYC °CoolRoofs program by providing volunteers to help apply a reflective white coating to one of NYCHA's rooftops in the Bronx. Applying a reflective surface to a roof helps reduce cooling costs, cut energy usage and lower greenhouse gas emissions. Click here to learn more about this and other events on 10/10/10.  

Check out the Shabbat Noach Resource Guide from the Green Chevre. COEJL has compiled a resource guide around Shabbat Noach with information from a network of leading Jewish environmental organizations including: Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, Canfei Nesharim, Hazon, the Shalom Center, and the JRF and the Reconstructionist Movement. Visit the resource page here. Learn more and share it with your community.

Green Israel Summit 4: Green Renewal Shabbat!  (Green Zionism) As we read about the Biblical flood and the renewal of the earth on Shabbat Noach, we will learn how to renew ourselves and the environment. Celebrate Shabbat Noach with stories, lectures and discussions in a welcoming, pluralistic setting. Explore the Jewish back-to-the-land movement and what Zionism means today. Learn about energy conservation, population growth, suburban sprawl, Negev preservation, and environmentalism during a time of war. COEJL's Director, Sybil Sanchez, will be speaking at the event. Meet other young Jewish environmentalists from across North America. Green Israel Summit (GIS) 4 is run by the Green Zionist Alliance and co-sponsored by COEJL, the American Zionist Movement and Hazon. When: Shabbat Noach, Oct. 8 - 10, 2010 Where: Eden Village Camp, just north of New York City, Who: Young Jewish environmentalists, ages 18-40 *
Midterm Election Guide
The JCPA is pleased to share "Jewish Values in Action", an engagement manual for the coming elections in November.  This guide is a useful tool for working with your community to prepare for the elections.

Included in the guide are sections on JCPA policies, programming resources, talking points on voter engagement, sample programs, election rules for non-profits, and more. The coming weeks are an important time to organize our communities and voters, and meangingfully engage our candidates.  We hope that you will find this voting guide a useful and valuable resource in your work.

The guide can be found online here.

For more on participating in the election, visit faithfuldemocracy.org.  The program, cosponsored by the JCPA, seeks to encourage respectful and responsible engagement in the election process
JCPA Programs

JCPA is lining up a roster of top speakers on the most important and timely issues for the Jewish community.  

Click Here to Register for the October Meetings!

Date & Location
Sunday, October 31 & Monday, November 1, 2010

UJA Federation of New York
130 East 59th Street
New York, NY 10022

JCPA Board of Directors Meeting - Monday, November 1
10:00am - 2:00pm

JCPA will host a session on Islam in America and U.S. policy with the Muslim World.  Confirmed speakers include: Imam Mohamed Hagmagid from the ADAMS Center and Rabbi Jack Bemporad of the Center for Religious Understanding.  Rev. Chloe Breyer, Executive Director of the Interfaith Center of New York, has been invited to speak as well.  

JCPA's Board of Directors will hear from Ido Aharoni, Acting Consul General of Israel, on how Israel is planning to meet the threats it faces from radical regimes and how Israel plans to approach the peace negotiations with Palestinians.

JCPA Task Force Meetings - Sunday, October 31
1:00 - 6:00pm

Jewish Security & The Bill of Rights
The JSBOR task force will look at issues pursued by the rising Tea Party Movement.  Additionally, members of the JSBOR and Israel, World Jewry, and International Human Rights task force will hear from Rev. Dr. William Harter of Presbyterians Concerned For Jewish Christian Relations on the upcoming Presbyterian General Assembly.

Equal Opportunity & Social Justice
Scheduled to speak at a session on senior poverty issues is William Rapfogel, CEO of Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty.  Jan Resseger with the United Church of Christ will speak about how the faith community is tackling the issue of education reform.  The EOSJ task force will continue discussions on paid sick leave, immigration reforms, and energy policy.  They will also learn about the rising Tea Party Movement.

Israel, World Jewry & International Human Rights
The IWJIHR task force will explore issues including Iran and Middle East Peace and issues related to Israeli minorities.  Stephen Kuperberg, Executive Director of the Israel on Campus Coalition, will discuss issues such as the delegitimization of Israel on campus, anti-Israel bias in classrooms, and how to engage younger generations in Israel issues.

Contribute to JCPA

The JCPA Needs you!  With a nationwide network of JCRCs and Federations and the strength of 14 national Jewish organizations, the JCPA is an effective advocate for the issues that matter. Our annual Leadership Appeal campaign seeks to raise $200,000 in 2010.  We know you care about the JCPA and the work that we do on behalf of the Jewish community here, in Israel and around the world.  Your support is crucial to our success.  To make a gift to the JCPA, please click here.  For more information, contact Max Mulcahy at 212.684.9815 or mmulcahy@thejcpa.org.

We thank you for your generous support!

Contribute Now!

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