Domestic Resolutions

Resolution on Increasing Government Support for Public Higher Education

Adopted by the 2014 JCPA Plenum

Education has been a core value throughout Jewish history, reflected in Maimonides's writing that, "any city that does not have a school in it shall be cut off [from all contact] until they find a teacher for the children."

Public higher education, from the community college to the university level, has long been recognized as the gateway to opportunity for individuals and as an essential underpinning for the economic advancement and competitiveness of the United States. On average, college graduates earn about twice what high school graduates earn over a 45 year career. Support for public higher education has been eroding for decades and has fallen precipitously since the Great Recession. This decline in public financing has been offset by commensurate increases in tuition and fees.

Funding for public higher education institutions comes from two sources, state and local government appropriations and tuition and fees. These two sources totaled $11,085 per full time equivalent (FTE) student in 1987 and nearly the same, $11,095, per FTE student 25 years later in 2012. However, the share paid by each of these sources changed dramatically. In 1987, government appropriations, at $8,497 per FTE student, accounted for 77% of the total, while tuition and fees accounted for 23%. By 2012, government appropriations had fallen to $5,906, 53% of the total, while tuition and fees now accounted for 47% of the total, and had more than doubled, increasing from $2,588 to $5,189.

 

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04:44 PM Mar 12, 2014 - 0 comments permalink


Resolution on Inclusion and Disabilities

Adopted by the 2014 JCPA Plenum

In Genesis 1:27, we read that Adam, and by extension, all people, was created in “the image of God.” This teaches us that there is holiness in all people, regardless of their physical, sensory, emotional or intellectual abilities. Everyone is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect.

Each individual can contribute in some way to the community and the world. Pirke Avot 4:3 says: “Do not despise any person, and do not disparage any object. For there is none who does not have his/her hour and there is no object that does not have its place.” It is our responsibility to provide opportunities for the realization of each person’s contributions and to remove or mitigate obstacles, as Leviticus 19:14 warns, “Do not curse a person who is deaf and do not place a stumbling block in front of a person who is blind.”

We are also reminded of the importance of education in creating an inclusive community: Jewish tradition teaches us to "educate every child according to his way" (Proverbs 22:6). In so doing, we commit ourselves not only to academic achievement, but also to the development of a Jewish identity, which includes a sense of "belonging" as a community member.

 

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04:36 PM Mar 12, 2014 - 0 comments permalink


Resolution on Combating Human Trafficking in the United States

Adopted by the 2014 JCPA Plenum

Human Trafficking is a form of modern day slavery. Human trafficking involves the use of force, fraud, and/or coercion for the purpose of sexual exploitation or forced labor and, under federal and state law, does not require movement of people across borders. It is believed there are currently 27 million slaves worldwide. The U.S. State Department estimates that 600,000 to 800,000 people are victims of human trafficking in the U.S. annually, 100,000-300,000 of which are children.

Human trafficking is a hidden crime that is seriously underreported. Within the U.S., both citizens and foreign nationals – women, men, teenagers, and children – can fall prey to traffickers who may threaten their lives and those of their families, isolate victims, and make it impossible for them to escape. According to federal law, human trafficking includes sex and labor trafficking.

 

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04:26 PM Mar 12, 2014 - 0 comments permalink


Resolution on a Comprehensive Approach to Preventing Mass Violence

Adopted by JCPA 2013 Plenum

The Jewish community has a deep and abiding concern for public safety, firmly rooted in Jewish tradition which compels us to uphold the sanctity of life.

In recent years, we have witnessed a profoundly distressing series of mass shootings in schools, shopping malls, theaters, houses of worship, and elsewhere, including the atrocity committed in Newtown, Connecticut in which 20 elementary school children and six educators were murdered. The Jewish community itself has experienced this violence at community centers, Jewish federations, and elsewhere. These violent and horrific acts shock our conscience and country. The pandemic of mass gun violence in America far exceeds that in other Western nations.

 

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07:04 PM Apr 09, 2013 - 0 comments permalink


Resolution on Fair Pay

Adopted by 2013 JCPA Plenum

The Equal Pay Act of 1963 requires employers to pay employees equal pay for equal work, regardless of the employee’s sex. So long as a job requires equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and is performed under similar working conditions, the employer must provide the same rate of pay to men and women who perform jobs that are substantially equal. It is job content—not job titles—that determines whether jobs are substantially equal.

Although this landmark law helped close the pay gap, improvements are necessary to make this civil rights act more effective. Women continue to earn less than their male counterparts. In 2011, the Census Bureau reported that women working full time earned on average 23 percent less than similarly situated men. Thus, for every dollar earned by a man, a woman doing equal work earned only 77 cents. The gap is substantially worse for women of color, with African American women earning 64 cents and Hispanic women earning 55 cents to every dollar earned by Caucasian men.

 

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06:30 PM Apr 09, 2013 - 0 comments permalink


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