Category Archive for: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties

Restorative and Rehabilitative Justice

by Haya Luftig

  • Posted on February 14, 2020

Adopted by the 2020 JCPA Delegates Assembly Click here for the PDF version. Beginning in the 1970s with the “War on Drugs” and harsh mandatory minimums, the U.S. prison population exploded—exacerbated by the 1994 Crime Bill—disproportionately harming poor people and people of color. The pervasiveness of mass incarceration has helped shed light on the dehumanizing…

Resolution Reaffirming Commitment to Racial Justice Within the Jewish Community

by Haya Luftig

  • Posted on February 28, 2018

Since its founding in 1944, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) has adopted policy resolutions declaring our commitment to the elimination of racial segregation and discrimination.[1] Working toward an inclusive, fair, and just society is a cornerstone of Jewish communal relations work.[2] This flows from our values as a Jewish people and our recognition…

Resolution on Voting Rights

by Haya Luftig

  • Posted on February 26, 2017

The Jewish people’s commitment to voting rights is rooted in our sacred obligation to pursue justice, in our historical experiences, and in our commitment to cherished rights. A 2011 Jewish Council for Public Affairs resolution on elections began with the core premise that “The cornerstone of democracy is the election process.” Unfortunately, the integrity of…

Inclusion and Disabilities

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 8, 2014

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…

Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Military

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

The 1993 “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy was proffered as a compromise that held the promise that would allow gays and lesbians to serve in the military if they did not reveal their sexual orientation.  Established under the premise of discretion and privacy, the policy still barred lesbian, gay, and bisexual people from serving…


by Administrator

  • Posted on February 25, 2008

The struggle for equality has taken many forms over the years as different groups have sought full participation in American society.  The inclusion of a group in anti-discrimination or hate crimes legislation is nothing more than recognition that the promise of economic freedom and physical security still eludes many Americans.  Legislation prohibiting discrimination based on…


by Administrator

  • Posted on February 25, 2007

   The American Jewish Community has historically supported civil rights and individual liberties.   The mission statement of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs expresses a commitment to protect, preserve, and promote a just American society.  The American Jewish community has a “direct stake” in promoting individual liberties, and an “ethical imperative” to do so, recognizing…

Opposition to Torture

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 25, 2006

  Judaism holds that every human being is created b’tzelem Elokim (in the divine image) and, as such, is entitled to dignity and respect.  Our government’s duty to protect the lives of our citizens must be balanced with the obligation to protect the precious rights guaranteed each individual. The war on terrorism has challenged law…


by Administrator

  • Posted on February 24, 2004

  Our community understands that, as all other Americans, Jews have a profound and direct stake in the war on terrorism.     As part of a global community that has been a target of hatred and attacks, we recognize that the safety of our society requires the physical security that government is created to provide.  Events…


by Administrator

  • Posted on February 24, 2004

  Jewish tradition teaches that “In one’s home, even a weaver is a ruler.” (B. Talmud, Megilla 12b)  The dignity that comes from having one’s own home is an essential component of a just society.  Increasing the availability of low-income, affordable housing can be a first step towards ensuring that all American have access to…