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Volume 14, Number 01
January 03, 2011

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In This Issue
Iran Initiative
Israel Advocacy Initiative
This Week in Washington
Public Policy Fellowship
JCPA Programs

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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.  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 Andi Milens at 212.684.7044 or amilens@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.

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Iran Initiative
After Delays, Iran Set to Open First Nuclear Plant.  Iran’s first nuclear power plant will begin running in February, after a month delay.  “The country began transferring fuel to the plant’s reactor area at an Aug. 21 ceremony that marked the opening of the Russian-built facility. It started loading fuel into the reactor in October. Under Iran’s agreement with Moscow-based Rosatom, the state-owned Russian company will supply uranium for the plant and remove spent fuel.”  To read the complete story in Bloomberg click here.

Iran May Commute Stoning Sentence.  The stoning sentence for an Iranian woman accused of adultery is still up in the air.  “Authorities reviewing a death by stoning sentence against an Iranian woman convicted of adultery could still halt the punishment, a senior judiciary official said Sunday as Iran struggles to mute an international outcry over the case. The comments, however, offered no clear evidence that Iran's judiciary would commute the sentence against Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who was taken from prison late Saturday to meet with journalists in another bid by Iran to highlight her purported confession of helping her lover kill her husband.”  To read the complete story in the Washington Post click here.
JCPA/Jewish Federations
Israel Advocacy Initiative
Groups Work Together to Design Israel Curriculum.  The JCRC of the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago is working with the Archdiocese of Chicago to create a curriculum on modern Israel to be taught in Catholic high schools. “From drip irrigation in an environmental science class to comparing Mark Twain's Innocents Abroad depiction of 1880s ‘Palestine’ to today's Israel in an American Literature class, or from teaching about immigrant absorption to Israel's humanitarian relief work in a social justice class, students at Chicago’s Catholic high school are learning about Israel beyond what they see in the media. Ninety-seven percent of those students go on to attend college.”  To read more about this initiative on the JUF website click here. To read about it in Catholic New World click here

Knesset Members to Learn Facebook. This Tuesday, 10 members of the Knesset will learn how to use social networking sites, such as YouTube and Facebook.  “Knesset members who signed up for the session, will learn about ‘public commercial activity’ taking place in Israel, particularly on Facebook. They will also learn about the use of the various sites by government offices, as well as Knesset members and other governments around the world which utilize them.”  To read the complete story from JPost click here
This Week in Washington
This Week in Washington.  The 112th Congress begins on Wednesday this week.  The House and Senate will return to swear in their new members and vote on leadership and rules for the next two years, which could include a change to the filibuster.  As the new Congress settles in this week, it is a good time to create and build relationships with your members, particularly freshmen.  The President returns from his family vacation in Hawaii this week.  The Supreme Court will not be hearing oral argument this week.  

President Names 6 Recess Appointments. 
Six appointees, whose positions the White House claims were held up by the Senate, were appointed last week by President Obama after Congress recessed for the year.  The appointments included James Cole as Deputy Attorney General and Robert Stephen Ford as Ambassador to Syria.  Ford is the first US Ambassador to Syria since 2005 when President Bush removed the Ambassador after Syria was accused of having a role in the assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq al-Hariri.  To read more, click here

E-Postcard Campaign.  In October 2010, the JCPA’s Confronting Poverty campaign led an e-postcard campaign urging President Obama to re-commit to cutting poverty in half by 2020 during his 2011 State of the Union address.  As the 2011 State of the Union approaches, many other national faith-based organizations are following in the JCPA’s footsteps and organizing similar pushes within their own community.  If you have not already signed the e-postcard, please take a moment and add your name to this growing list of anti-poverty advocates across the country.  Sign the e-postcard here.

Israeli Arab Issues Community Education Day. 
The JCPA is cosponsoring an event entitled “Arab Citizens of Israel — Challenges and Opportunities: A Community Education Day” with the Greater Washington Forum on Israeli Arab Issues.  The event, being held on January, 9 2011 at the DC JCC, will feature Ruth Carmi, director of the Arab Civic Engagement Project, Israel Religious Action Center and New Israel Fund Law Fellow, Mohammad Darawshe, co-director of The Abraham Fund Initiatives, Noam Katz, Minister for Public Diplomacy at the Embassy of Israel, and others.  The event is free for those who sign up in advance.  Complete information, including registration, can be found here.
Jews in Cancun: Tu B’Shvat Discussion on Post-Cancun Climate-Change Action. What happened at the U.N. summit on climate change and what were the results? And most importantly, what should we do next?  The summit seems to have restored trust in the international process to achieve a fair, ambitious, and legally binding agreement to address climate change.  Progress was made on programs to address adaptation, forest protection, and technology cooperation. But this is clearly not enough. Political change is needed in individual countries to inspire governments to take a stronger stand next year in Durban, South Africa, where the contentious issue of renewal of the Kyoto Protocol must be resolved.

What are the most important issues for Jews to address? And what can we do to mobilize locally, nationally and internationally? Join the conversation with Jewish activists who were in Cancun themselves: David Turnbull, executive director of the U.S. Climate Action Network; Reed Arnow, Midwest Youth Climate Leader; and Dr. Orr Karassin, a Green Zionist Alliance representative on the board of Keren Kayemet L’Yisrael (Jewish National Fund in Israel).

Cosponsored by: The Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life (COEJL), the Green Zionist Alliance, and Hazon.  To register, click here.
Public Policy Fellowship
The JCPA is hiring a Public Policy Fellow in the Washington, DC office!  The Public Policy Fellow will work primarily within the Confronting Poverty campaign and be responsible for, among other things, planning the 2011 Jewish-African American Leaders Mission to Detroit, attending national coalition meetings and Hill briefings, supporting JCPA advocacy work, and preparing policy documents.  If you, or someone you know, is interested in learning more, please view the job posting here on idealist.org.  If you would like more information, please contact Elana Fox at efox@thejcpa.org, 202-212-6037.
JCPA Programs
Micro-Matching Grants.  Is your JCRC looking for additional resources for your pre-existing poverty programs?  Does your JCRC have a great idea for a new poverty-related program? Apply for a 2011 Micro-Matching grant. Download the application here.  Micro-Matching grants provide communities with up to $3,500 for anti-poverty programming and advocacy.  They are a program of the JCPA's Confronting Poverty campaign, which addresses Jewish community engagement in anti-poverty service, activism and advocacy.  Applications are due by January 31, 2011.  If you have questions or comments, please contact Elana Fox at efox@thejcpa.org, 202-212-6037.

Poverty Clusters Call on Wednesday, January 19 at 3pm ET.  This conference call will feature Ellen Nissenbaum, Legislative Director of the Center on Budget & Policy Priorities.  She will preview the upcoming budget battles and how the new federal budget will likely bring a greater risk of poverty and hardship, especially related to healthcare implementation, SNAP reauthorization and affordable housing programs.

The call-in number for this Cluster Call is: 1-218-936-4700, Access Code: 379527#.  If you are interested in participating in the call, please RSVP to Elana Fox (efox@thejcpa.org, 202-212-6037) with your name and e-mail.
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. 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 Andi Milens at 212.684.7044 or amilens@thejcpa.org.

We thank you for your generous support!

Contribute Now!

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