Guiding Principles for Advocacy
Guiding Principles for Advocacy (2023)
JCRC embraces the diversity of thought, encourages the expression of differing opinions, and engages the general and Jewish communities in a manner that reflects our values and advances the goals of our Board of Directors. Specific positions on state and federal legislation will be determined after bills are filed and reviewed by the JCRC Government & Domestic Affairs Committee, in consultation with our Executive Committee.
JCRC acts in a leadership role on the following issues:
JCRC proactively combats antisemitism through outreach, programming, education, and training, and responds appropriately to acts or expressions of antisemitism when they occur.
JCRC supports anti-discrimination measures, including the passage of “bias crimes” legislation that allows for enhanced penalties when the victim of a crime is specifically targeted because of a fundamental characteristic or religion.
JCRC affirms its commitment to pursuing policies that ensure civil liberties, civil rights, and equal protection for all. JCRC affirms the right of faith communities to prescribe their own standards for recognizing religious marriage.
Immigrants and Refugees
JCRC supports fair and humane immigration policies and the fair and humane treatment of immigrants within our communities. JCRC opposes efforts to reduce the availability of public benefits to immigrants and refugees. JCRC opposes efforts to limit legal immigration.
JCRC will continue its efforts to strengthen the bonds between the State of Indiana, the United States, and the State of Israel. JCRC will take a lead role in any legislative proposals in the Indiana General Assembly specifically related to Israel or the interests of the Jewish Community. JCRC counters efforts to delegitimize Israel’s right to exist or to boycott or isolate Israel from the world community.
Separation of Church and State
JCRC believes that the separation of church and state, embodied in the First Amendment as well as the Indiana Constitution, is a bulwark of religious liberty in the U.S. JCRC will continue to maintain its traditional support of a clear separation between church and state.
JCRC works in coalitions, monitors, and addresses the following issues on a case-by-case basis:
Children and Education
JCRC recognizes that the public school system in America is vital to our future and will support efforts to adequately fund the public schools including continued support for fully-funded full-day kindergarten. Additionally, JCRC supports quality early childhood development programs that are safe, accessible, and affordable, including licensed and accredited child care, Head Start, and pre-kindergarten programs, so that all children have an equal opportunity for success in school.
JCRC works with coalition partners on proposals to reform our criminal justice system, with a particular emphasis on reducing racial disparities and systemic biases. JCRC supports exploring thoughtful alternatives to incarceration and efforts to improve the juvenile justice system while enhancing safety and reducing violence. JCRC supports efforts to provide greater protections for victims of domestic violence, sexual harassment and violence, and human trafficking.
JCRC supports humane and dignified efforts to bring low-income Hoosiers to a level of economic self-sufficiency by adequately funding and modernizing human service and work support programs, and ensuring that housing, transportation, healthcare, and childcare are safe, accessible, and affordable.
JCRC supports a free and fair election process for all legally qualified voters to ensure confidence, transparency, equity, efficiency, and accessibility. JCRC supports the drawing of balanced state legislative and Congressional districts. JCRC opposes efforts to de-legitimize the electoral process.
JCRC recognizes the importance of access to affordable, quality healthcare services, and will monitor proposals that impact the physical health, mental health, and well-being of Hoosiers, especially for Jewish community agencies, low-income residents, older adults, and children.
Older Adults and Persons with Disabilities
JCRC supports the funding (at all levels of government) of aging-in-place supportive services, which enable communities to implement innovative services and programs designed to create “livable communities” that allow older adults to live with dignity and security within their own homes. JCRC supports efforts and legislation to help provide for the full inclusion in daily life of individuals with physical or developmental disabilities.
JCRC recognizes that gun ownership is a constitutionally protected right, urges responsible gun ownership, and supports enhanced enforcement of gun laws already on the books. JCRC supports legislation that will increase public safety, including the safety of schools and houses of worship, without infringing on individual rights. JCRC will work with our coalition partners to address the causes of, and attempt to reduce, crime and gun violence in our community.
JCRC views matters of reproduction as an issue of religious and individual liberty and regards absolute bans on abortions as an infringement on the separation of religion and state. JCRC opposes laws that do not permit access to abortion when Jewish law compels it, and we consider such laws to be a violation of our rights as Americans to freely exercise our deeply held religious principles. JCRC will continue to support reporductive rights and reproductive healthcare services.
JCRC understands that many educational, community, and social services are funded through varying tax levies, and administered and distributed at many levels of state and local government. Therefore, JCRC will monitor all tax and government reform proposals in order to ensure that vulnerable Hoosiers are not burdened disproportionately.