State Policy Advocacy (SPA) Resource Kit

Webinar: What Judaism Really Teaches About Abortion

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Reproductive freedom is a Jewish value. Our tradition not only permits the termination of pregnancy, but even requires it when the life of the pregnant person is at stake. It’s time to reclaim the narrative around religion and access to abortion. Now, more than ever, we need to show that supporting reproductive health, rights, and justice is an issue of moral concern, of religious concern, and of Jewish concern.

In this webinar, Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg, NCJW’s Scholar in Residence, teaches how to make the Jewish case for abortion access, so that you can speak about our tradition’s approach from a place of deep knowledge and understanding. In preparation for NCJW’s inaugural Repro Shabbat (Feb. 12-13), this webinar shares tools to get involved, partner locally with other organizations, and plan a Repro Shabbat program.

Use the Resources

Staying in the Fight for Racial Justice

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Our long-term commitment to showing up in meaningful ways in the work for racial justice must be unwavering. What can and should this look like? And how do our fight for racial justice and our work combating antisemitism intersect?
Watch NCJW’s conversation with Eric Ward, Executive Director of the Western States Center, Yavilah McCoy, CEO of Dimensions Educational Consulting, and Sheila Katz, CEO of National Council of Jewish Women as we discuss how we show up and stay in this critical work, and to affirm the crucial truth that Black lives matter.

Continue the conversation

Share the recording with your members, leaders, and networks and then hold a discussion using the prompts below.

  1. Share one word that encapsulates how you’re feeling right after watching the conversation with Eric Ward and Yavilah McCoy.
  2. What about the presentation felt empowering or exciting to you?
  3. What about this presentation feels challenging or intimidating to you?
  4. What’s one thing that you learned?
  5. What’s one thing that you’re going to do as a result of this conversation?

Webinar: What’s next? Responding to the 2020 Election 

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The 2020 elections — arguably the most unusual and consequential elections in our nation’s history — are over. So what happens now? In this webinar, NCJW’s Government Relations and Advocacy team members Jody Rabhan and Shannon Russel discussed the results of the elections and our priorities for the next Administration and Congress and answered leaders burning questions about the path forward. View the presentation slides. 

Resources & Action Opportunities

Get Out the Vote in Georgia – Monday, December 14 from 6-8pm ET/ 3-5pm PT and Monday, December 21 6-8pm ET/ 3-5pm PT

  • NCJW is partnering with the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (RAC), Women of Reform Judaism, and Reclaim our Vote on this effort.

Speak out about the federal courts

Mobilize your community for reproductive health, rights, and justice

Hello [X], 

The challenges facing our country are manifold — some acute and some deeply-rooted — but the victory of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, the first Black and South Asian woman to reach the second-highest office in the nation, gives us a more hopeful path forward. And while we may feel a sense of collective relief, we know that abortion care will still remain out of reach for too many and is threatened even more by the recent Supreme Court appointment. 

That’s why I am reaching out today to share the National Council of Jewish Women’s petitions for people of faith and conscience to call on Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act (HR 2975/S 1645) and the EACH Woman Act (HR 1692/S 758). 

The Women’s Health Protection Act would secure our constitutional rights and create a federal tool invalidating outrageous abortion bans and restrictions like the law struck down in June Medical Services v. Russo

The EACH Woman Act would permanently end the Hyde Amendment and related restrictions which block use of insurance coverage for abortion services. 

The petitions, which outline the moral and faith values that inspire our support for abortion rights and access, will be delivered to members of the 117th Congress. Add your name today and share far and wide with the people of faith in your life who believe in compassion and dignity for all and are committed to ensuring equity and justice for the most marginalized members of our society.

Ruth’s Revolution

Saying that honoring Justice Ginsburg’s dying wish to keep her Supreme Court seat vacant until after the election would be an uphill battle was an understatement. NCJW knew that it would be a longshot. Yet the reason we chose to fight was inspired by something else that Justice Ginsburg had to say, years prior:

“Dissents speak to a future age. It’s not simply to say, ‘My colleagues are wrong, and I would do it this way.’ But the greatest dissents become court opinions, and gradually over time, their views become the dominant view. So that’s the dissenter’s hope: that they are writing not for today but tomorrow.”

While we certainly knew that it would take everything we had and more to keep Barrett off the bench, we knew that by just showing up to stand up and speak out was enough, dayenu, to show future generations of advocates and activists that we dissented, that we disapprove of the rushed process and unjust confirmation. 

Not only did NCJW advocates speak out, but we also did so in record numbers. Here is just a sample of the mountains of work we did: 

  • We reached over two million people through the press, social media, radio, and podcasts.
  • Together we raised over $300,000
  • We engaged 15,000 advocates across the country in 19 sections and 15 states.
  • Put together 70+ actions, including 30+ action alerts, 20 webinars, rallies, and virtual advocacy events, and seven sign-on letters to senators.
  • Generated almost 19,000 calls to the Senate, reached every Senator, and had over 10 lobby visits 
  • Engaged with over 1,000 people at 33 Circling, the Courthouse ritual walks across the country.

Thank you, todah rabah, to everyone who mobilized with us, whether making a call, circling a courthouse, or making a contribution. We didn’t win this fight, but we have so much to be proud of. Future generations of NCJW advocates can look back on this moment and know that we dissented and left the door open for more feminist change.

Webinar: National Voter Registration Day: Get Out the Vote!

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Every year, millions of Americans find themselves unable to vote because they miss a registration deadline, don’t update their registration, or aren’t sure how to register. And it’s even more difficult to register to vote during a pandemic. Watch the webinar recording with NCJW and Caitlin Donnelly, Education and Engagement Coordinator at Nonprofit VOTE, to learn how to participate in National Voter Registration Day, on Tuesday, September 22, the only holiday devoted to getting all voters registered. Hear from NCJW Vice President and State Policy Advocate Co-Coordinator Claire Lipschultz on how to get involved in Vote Forward, a Get Out the Vote letter writing campaign, and NCJW Michigan Section Promote the Vote, Protect the Vote captain Linda Levy who discussed Let’s Both Vote!, a new campaign launched by NCJW MI to reach out to young voters.

View the presentation.

Use the Resources

NCJW resources:

VoteForward Resources:

  • Using unique NCJW link, sign up to help register voters from under-represented demographics and/or encourage them to vote

National Voter Registration Day (September 22, 2020) resources:

  • Sign up to become a partner organization
  • Check out the NVRD partner organization toolkit for information about webinars, stickers, posters, and more 
  • For information about voting in your state check out this interactive guide

Want to learn more about USPS and voting by mail?

  • Watch this USPS Briefing by Tammy Patrick of the Democracy Fund on recent changes to USPS and how they could impact vote by mail this fall