Social Justice Update
by Susan Brooks
As part of the Union for Reform Judaism, the Religious Action Committee, or RAC, is the social justice arm of the Reform movement. Here in California we are fortunate to have dedicated staﬀ and impressive lay leadership from RAC-CA to help guide legislative priorities based on our Jewish values. Each year, RAC-CA chooses priority legislation in several areas—climate change, criminal justice, immigration, health care, housing and gun violence prevention. A priority for each area is set by research committees and then the executive board chooses one over-arching priority. The priority for this year was increasing funding for gun violence prevention (GVP). Research throughout the state has shown that these programs are eﬀective in reducing gun deaths and our goal is to expand existing programs and start them in areas of our state where they are not currently in place.
As many of you know, we sent out an email asking you to call Governor Newsom’s oﬃce to request that he increase funding for local GVP programs in his June budget. Through this eﬀort, RAC-CA was able to generate almost 900 calls to the Governor’s oﬃce and the funding was tripled. We are very proud that TBE was part of that eﬀort. Our community has been deeply aﬀected by gun violence and we were successful in taking action beyond mere thoughts and prayers.
In the coming months we will share information on other legislative priorities and how you can help bring our Jewish values to life by passing legislation regarding the health and safety of everyone in our state.
If you would like to get involved with the Social Justice Committee or would like to receive action alerts and information on social justice events and presentations, please email me with your interest.