WRJ is committed to doing the essential work of DEI (Diversity, Equity & Inclusion) within WRJ, in our Movement, and in our Jewish, local and national communities, in ourselves working with partners in the greater community. WRJ understands DEI and Racial Justice work to be continuing the work of ongoing improvement by educating ourselves and bending the arc of history toward justice, inclusion, and belonging.
The women of WRJ have long been active in the fight against discrimination and for the betterment of society through the expansion of rights and freedoms. We have led the Reform Movement in our support of civil rights and racial equality, LGBTQ equality, the rights of people with disabilities, public education, immigration reform, gun violence prevention, employment rights, and criminal justice. Our commitment to the Jewish mandate of “tzedek, tzedek tirdof, justice, justice you shall pursue (Deuteronomy 16:18),” has inspired us to fight to bring justice and equality to all people.
Race Relations & Criminal Justice
In response to tragedies in Ferguson, New York City, and Cleveland, the WRJ Executive Committee has made a statement advocating for systemic change to address racial & structural inequality in law enforcement in the U.S. WRJ is proud of its long history supporting race relations and criminal justice through our Resolutions and Statements: from advocating for an anti-lynching bill in the 1930s to promoting affirmative action and equal protection under the law in the 1970s and 1990s.
LGBTQ Rights & Religious Freedom
In light of Kay Long's experience as a transgender woman who was prohibited from praying in either section of the Kotel, WRJ recognizes the transgender Jews who share in this struggle with us and hope that all women—regardless of assigned gender at birth—be allowed to pray as they wish. WRJ has been a vocal advocate of transgender and LGBTQ rights, in particular as the first Jewish organization to openly support gays and lesbians, and of the right of women to pray equally at the Kotel.
For Jewish Disability Awareness Month (February)
Read about how Rachel's congregation and Jewish community welcomed her daughter with Autism Spectrum Disorder with open arms.
Check out the programs put on by past Or Ami award winners Sisterhood of Congregation Shaarai Shomayim of Lancaster, PA (2013) and Temple Shalom Sisterhood of Dallas, TX (2009) for more ideas on how to support and include community members with disabilities.
The Beth Am Women of Los Altos Hills, CA, and the Women of Temple Isaiah of Lafayette, CA have organized for many years to support families with adult children who suffer from chronic mental illness. In 2013 they created a support group guide and a training brochure for communicating with people with mental illness, for which they won the WRJ Pacific District Kavod Award.
Resolutions & Statements
2007: Drug Policy
1999: Hate Crimes
1997: Gay and Lesbian Rights
1995: Affirmative Action
1981: "We the People"
1977: Affirmative Action
1977: Rights of Individuals
1975: Rights of Individuals
1965: Judaism and the Family
1959: Capital Punishment
1957: The Middle East
1947: Opposition to Poll Tax
2012: Get Out The Vote