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JCPA E-Update

November 21, 2017


"For the first time in more than two decades, Federations that had previously cut their JCRCs are now re-investing. Some smaller Jewish communities with no history of community relations are also developing a community relations program. Community relations is once again on the rise. Our hope is that Federations will take note, and invest in a resurgent community relations field. The Jewish community needs a stronger external presence. And that begins in every Federated community."

Click here to read the full article, The Return of the JCRC, by David Bernstein and Rabbi Doug Kahn.


Action Alert: Speak Out in Support of the Bipartisan Dream Act – JCPA is working diligently for the passage of a clean Dream Act by the end of the year. The Administration’s decision to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) places 800,000 Dreamers at risk of deportation. The Dream Act of 2017 would enable undocumented immigrant youth brought to the United States as children to obtain permanent residence status and, eventually, a pathway to citizenship for those who work, attend college, or serve in our armed forces.

  • National Jewish Organization Sign-on Letter Sent to Congress – In coordination with faith groups around the country during the "Faith Week of Action in Support of Dreamers," JCPA sent a letter signed by 22 Jewish organizations to every member of Congress urging them to pass the Dream Act. Click here to read the Dream Act letter.
  • What You Can Do: Continue sending letters through December!Urge your Congressional delegation to support the Dream Act and ensure its swift passage. Click here to write your members today!

Johnson Amendment in Peril – The House of Representatives comprehensive tax reform legislation included language that would weaken the Johnson Amendment. In response, JCPA and JFNA circulated a sign-on letter joined by 55 Jewish groups. The letter urges Congress to reject any provisions that would undermine the Johnson Amendment. This law prohibits tax-exempt organizations from endorsing or opposing political candidates. JCPA will continue its advocacy as tax reform moves through the Senate in the coming weeks

JCPA Prepares to Submit Resolutions to the Field in January – In September, JCPA’s Policy Advisory Committee approved resolution topics submitted by the community relations field. Sponsors are currently drafting the resolutions, which will be ready for the field to review by the beginning of January. JCPA encourages JCRCs to organize a process for their leadership to review and provide input on the drafts as part of this consensus-building opportunity. The topics include transgender discrimination, racial justice, and white supremacy, among others. For more information, contact tgilden@thejcpa.org.


Tune in to Educational Series on Israeli-Palestinian Issue for Community Relations Leaders – Geared toward JCRCs and their leadership, JCPA's five-part educational series explores contemporary Israeli-Palestinian issues. The series aims to provide the knowledge needed for the community relations field's ongoing efforts to achieve a secure, democratic, and Jewish state of Israel at peace with Palestinians and other Arab neighbors.

Tune in to Webinar 4! 

Israeli Settler Perspective
December 5 at 12:00 PM EST

Featuring Mayor Oded Reviv

Previous webinars include an opening featuring David Haperin; Palestinian Perspective featuring Ghaith Al-Omari; and Israel Government Perspective featuring Ambassador Dani Dayan. For information about participating or watching previous episodes, contact your local JCRC or hluftig@thejcpa.org.

Leadership Mission Leaves for Israel – The Israel delegation is preparing to leave for high-level meetings in Israel that will begin on December 5.The 29-person delegation includes the 13 JCPA Frank Fellows, emerging community relations leaders from across the United States. On this fact-finding mission the participants will be focusing on a number of key areas. To learn more about the mission click here.

Follow the Mission on Facebook by liking JCPA’s page www.facebook.com/thejcpa.


Civil Rights Mission to D.C. – From October 30-31, a JCPA delegation met with with leaders of organization's that represent communities of color in order to strengthen and create new relationships, understand their policy priorities, and forge partnership in areas where we have synergy. JCPA’s leaders welcomed the new NAACP President, Derrick Johnson, and presented him with a plaque that reads "justice, justice, thou shalt pursue."

Washington Representatives Convened in D.C. – JCPA, in collaboration with the JFNA Washington Office, convened meetings of the Washington Representatives of Jewish organizations in D.C. in October and November to share policy priorities and find opportunities to partner on issues of common cause.

Government Affairs Workshop in Rochester, New York – The Rochester JCRC recently hosted JCPA's David Bernstein and Melanie Roth Gorelick as guest speakers on combatting anti-Semitism and strengthening government affairs and advocacy work. If you are interested in holding a government affairs workshop in your community or in receiving substantive materials on the topic, please contact mgorelick@thejcpa.org.

"Your presentation really made us think about how we have been doing things here up to now, and how we can change and adapt to be more effective. I think the group really learned a lot, and today was just the beginning of an ongoing effort to foster relationships with legislators and elected officials,”said Julie Nusbaum, JCRC Rochester Chair.

JCPA Participates in the Jewish Social Justice Roundtable’s Network Assembly – JCPA attended the Network Assembly, which brought together 57 Jewish organizations working on social justice. The Roundtable has focused on a year-long effort to promote racial justice education and practice within Jewish organizations. The retreat provided professional development opportunities, including racial justice trainings.

JCPA Attends JFNA’s General Assembly – JCPA's David Bernstein and Cheryl Fishbein participated in the JFNA General Assembly in Los Angeles. At the conference, Bernstein facilitated a meeting of the JFNA Alliance and Fishbein moderated the opening program, Expect the Unexpected: Perspectives on Today’s Politics. They convened the JCRC and JCPA leaders in attendance.



April 21-24: Save the Date! JCPA National Conference – Mark your calendar for JCPA's national conference that will take place from April 21-24, 2018, in New York City. We hope you can attend and partner with us by bringing a delegation from your community that would include you and your Chair, leaders, and professional staff. To help us recruit, we have materials for you to distribute to your networks. For more information on how to get involved, please contact Haya Luftig at hluftig@thejcpa.org.


February 6: Jewish Disability Advocacy Day – Help educate Congress and the Administration on issues of importance to people with disabilities and their families by participating in the Jewish Federations of North America's 8th Annual Jewish Disability Advocacy Day on February 6, 2018, 9:00 AM, Washington, D.C. To register, contact Aaron.Kaufman@JewishFederations.org.


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