Social Justice Intensive

Wednesday | 1:15 - 2:30 PM

Immigration Justice: History, Policy, and How to Take Action

Supporting immigration justice requires an understanding of the historical and political context of current conditions. In this session, participants will hear leaders with on-the-ground experience explain current legislation, policy, and the contemporary situation for migrants. Their analysis will become the basis for recommendations on how your congregation can make a difference.

  • Helena Olea-Rodriguez

  • Allison Grossman

  • Julia Paley

  • Mony Ruiz-Velasco

Wednesday | 3:00 - 4:15 PM

To Pursue and Protect: Advancing Reproductive Justice in Your Community

We are witnessing an unprecedented assault on reproductive rights in the United States. We have seen real erosion of this constitutional right, rendering abortion inaccessible, unaffordable, and out-of-reach for millions of Americans. This session will provide an overview of the current political landscape, offer opportunities to hear from Reform Jewish leaders advocating for these issues, and equip congregational leaders with tools to take collective action for reproductive justice in your own community.

  • Rabbi Liz Hirsch

  • Khadine Bennett

  • Ally Karpel

Thursday | 9:00 - 10:15 AM

Community Organizing 201: Running an Effective Social Justice Campaign

In this session, participants will explore what it takes to build and execute an effective social justice campaign. Rabbis, lay leaders, and community organizers will discuss what it means to set campaign goals, bring your community into action, and carry out a strategy to move us toward a more just world.

  • Rabbi Neil Hirsch

  • Julie Webb

  • Jack Kaplan

  • Judy Levey

Thursday | 9:00 - 10:15 AM

Mobilizing Around the Environment and Climate Change: How Your Community Can Take Action

In this session, participants will learn about different ways Reform communities can ensure that synagogues or communal spaces are as green as possible. Participants will learn about how to engage in advocacy around a host of environmental issues, as well as hear from congregational and environmental justice leaders engaged in the holy work of protecting the environment. The focus will be on next steps to bring this work back home.

  • Alan Halpern

  • Allison Grossman

  • Andrew Goldenkranz

  • Scott Onque 

Thursday | 2:00 - 3:15 PM

Addressing Systemic Racism in the Criminal Justice System 

Racial disparities is in the U.S. criminal justice system is blatant and widespread. In this session participants will explore national trends regarding criminal justice reform efforts on the local and state levels and hear from Reform Jewish leaders who’ve implemented successful criminal justice reform initiatives in their communities. With an understanding of how congregations and communities can advocate for a more just criminal justice system, we can continue to push for a more racially equitable world one step at a time.

  • Patrice James

  • Rabbi Lydia Medwin 

  • Dr. John Eaves 

Thursday | 2:00 - 3:15 PM

Community Organizing 201: Using Relational Outreach to Congregational Social Justice

In many congregations, social justice work stays within the social justice lane. In this session, participants will focus on how to break through to the larger congregation and move justice to the center of congregational life. They will consider how to build and strengthen the congregation’s social justice work, examine congregational case studies, and reflect on effective relational outreach techniques, including one-on-one conversations, house meetings, and “Shabbat Schmoozers.”

  • Rabbi Paul Kipnes

  • Rabbi Julie Saxe-Taller

  • Rabbi Marina Yergin

Thursday | 3:45 - 5:00 PM

Community Organizing 201: Partnering Across Lines of Difference

Making systemic change to combat injustice requires collaborating across lines of faith, race, and economic background, as well as ensuring that the work either is led or deeply informed by those most directly impacted by the injustice. Participants will explore the value of relationship-building beyond the Jewish community and how to be good partners within diverse networks. They will learn to navigate differences while working toward a common purpose and making space for all to lead and be heard and reflect on approaching intersectionality as a Reform Jewish community.

  • Rabbi Shoshanah Conover

  • Rabbi Josh Stanton

  • Emmanuel Andre

Thursday | 3:45 - 5:00 PM

Gun Violence Prevention: The Reform Movement's Campaign to End Gun Violence

Come learn hear from the leaders of the Reform Movement's Gun Violence Prevention Campaign and hear how we are addressing gun violence on the local, state, and national level. Learn how to get your own community involved in this work and be part of ending America's gun violence epidemic.

  • Rabbi Joel Mosbacher

  • Madeline Canfield

  • Kathryn Fleisher

  • Zoe Terner

Friday | 9:00 - 10:15 AM

Still a Nation of Immigrants? Understanding and Acting Upon Key Themes in Immigration Justice

In this session, participants will explore key themes in immigration justice, before focusing on specific actions, including refugee resettlement in the United States and Canada; ways to volunteer at the border to support asylum seekers; sanctuary; Jewish community members directly impacted by immigration policy; and working with local interfaith immigration coalitions and migrant-led groups.

  • Rachel Grant Meyer

  • Isabel Burton

  • Olga Kaufman

  • Richard Kurland

  • Julia Paley

  • Claudia Lucero

  • Elias Rosenfeld

Friday | 2:00 - 3:15 PM

Civic Engagement: Harnessing the Power of All Voters

Our democracy is strongest when every eligible voter participates in the process. In 2020, as in 2018, we will fulfill the sacred mandate of tikkun olam, repairing the world, through a nonpartisan civic engagement campaign. Using case studies that feature Reform Jewish leaders who successfully led voter engagement efforts in 2018, participants will learn about various voter engagement models, both within and beyond the Jewish community.

  • Joy Friedman 

  • Rabbi Ethan Prosnit 

  • Cantor Jason Kaufman