Government Affairs, Advocacy and Organizing
JCRC’s Government Affairs team champions the values and interests of Greater Boston’s organized Jewish community to ensure that our voice is heard in the halls of Beacon Hill and beyond. We advance our community’s shared priorities by securing public funding, advocating for broad-ranging policy change, and working with legislative leaders on topics of importance to the organized Jewish community – from civil rights to human services, economic opportunity to safety and security, and the protection of democratic values.
Email FayeRuth Fisher, JCRC Senior Director of Government Affairs, to learn more.
Social Services and the Social Safety Net
JCRC advocates for funding for the innovative programs of our Jewish social service network, creating pathways to economic opportunity, supporting individuals and families, and ensuring safety for our most vulnerable. The MA State Budget bears powerful testimony to our impact, as we leverage millions of dollars each year to enable all residents to have access to public resources to lead self-determined lives. Click here to read JCRC’s mental health principles.
The Massachusetts Association of Jewish Federations (MAJF) is a statewide government affairs office that strengthens the relationship between the Jewish community and elected officials and personnel in key government departments, advocates for issues of concern to the community, and helps its members access public funding to provide services to its clients.
The FY23 State Budget is a value statement investing in the social safety net for seniors, immigrants, and refugees, and in the security of our communities. The FY23 Budget enables us to meet our shared mission of a more just and equitable society where all residents of the Commonwealth can thrive.
JCRC successfully advocated for:
Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP)
Gateways: Access to Jewish Education
Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Boston (JBBBS)
Jewish Community Centers (JCC) of Greater Boston
Jewish Community Center (JCC) of the North Shore
Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JF&CS)
Jewish Family Service (JFS) of MetroWest
Jewish Family Service (JFS) of Western Massachusetts
Jewish Federation of the Berkshires
Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts
Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford
Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts
Jewish Vocational Service (JVS)
Merrimack Valley Jewish Federation
Combating Antisemitism, Bigotry, and Demonization of Israel
JCRC advocates for policies to combat rising extremism, prevent violence, and educate future generations by promoting Genocide education. JCRC also secures funding for nonprofit security grants to protect faith-based institutions that are at higher risk. At a time when antisemitism, including antisemitic attacks on the legitimacy of the Jewish State of Israel, is intensifying, JCRC ensures that our partners name and call out antisemitism and demonization when they see it. We also mobilize our community to push back against a one-sided narrative – like in Cambridge, where we prevented an order by BDS.
JCRC is committed to upholding a robust democratic process and ensuring that people across the commonwealth will have access to voting. The principles adopted by our Council for defending democracy guide our advocacy for policies that identify and remove barriers to voter registration and turnout.
Civil Rights, Human Rights, and Immigration
JCRC organizes and advocates for civil rights including transgender and marriage equality, racial justice, criminal justice reform, and pay equity. JCRC advocates for immigrant rights and has helped organize comprehensive systems of support, consisting of synagogue teams, to provide accompaniment and bond support to immigrants seeking safety in Massachusetts. JCRC has helped raise over $1.5 million to bond out over 320 people from ICE detention. Since 2021, JCRC has also worked closely with Catholic Charities Boston and Jewish Family Services of MetroWest, along with hundreds of volunteers from synagogues and churches across the Commonwealth, to resettle Afghan refugees and other refugee populations fleeing dangerous conditions in their home countries.
Email Rachie Lewis Director of Synagogue Organizing, to get involved.
Greater Boston Interfaith Organization
As a founding member of the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization, JCRC has brought many synagogues into this network of over 60 faith organizations – where Jewish institutions have comprised a significant portion of the membership over the last two decades. With our Christian and Muslim partners, we’ve had a powerful direct impact on healthcare reform, affordable housing, and racial justice. Our deep relationships have been essential during critical moments in recent years. We have stood together time and again when our communities have been challenged by increasingly violent attacks rooted in bigotry, racism, and antisemitism.