The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) is a standing committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans. The JCRC serves as the Federation's advocacy and social action arm, engaging all segments of the Greater New Orleans Jewish community and connecting with non-Jewish individuals and groups in the region to promote Jewish values.
The work of the JCRC generally falls into three categories: anti-Semitism and Israel advocacy, social and legislative action, and community service through the Nourish program.
For more information, or to get involved, contact Mithun Kamath at firstname.lastname@example.org or 504-780-5608.
Never Again Education Act
The JCRC is proud to report that as of May 13, 2020, both the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate have overwhelmingly passed - and on a bipartisan basis - the Never Again Education Act (H.R. 943 / S. 2085), which would provide $10 million over five years to fund Holocaust education in American schools!
As part of an effort led by the Jewish Federations of North America and Hadassah, the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans was one of over 300 organizations from every state to have signed on to this letter to the House in April 2019 advocating for the bill’s passage.
Both Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-L.A., and Rep. Steve Scalise, R-L.A., voted in favor in the House, and in the Senate the bill passed by unanimous consent. Thank you to our members of Congress for supporting this important effort!
The Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans is one of over 650 Jewish organizations and leaders that signed on to the following national statement, which was sent to members of Congress, the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services, and the Administration for Community Living:
Jewish Community Statement Calling for Expanded Access to Nutrition Assistance Due to Coronavirus Crisis
March 18, 2020
The coronavirus crisis is not only a national health pandemic, but a time of urgent concern for those who are most vulnerable in our country; those at economic risk are facing dire consequences right now. On behalf of the undersigned Jewish clergy and organizations, we call on the Administration and Congress to work together to increase and expand access to federal nutrition assistance for food insecure Americans in the wake of the coronavirus crisis (COVID-19). Our Jewish texts and traditions command us again and again to feed the hungry, care for the poor, and safeguard those who are most vulnerable — to not "harden [our] heart[s] or shut [our] hand[s] against [our] poor brethren" in need (Deuteronomy 15:7). This has never been more important than now.
Please click here to read the entire statement.
ADL South Central & the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans release joint statement on the arrest of Cane Zander Brown
March 11, 2020 --
On March 10, 2020, an arrest was made in Jefferson Parish of a man allegedly responsible for the anti-Semitic vandalism at the Northshore Jewish Congregation in September 2018. This arrest is the culmination of over a year of work by multiple law enforcement agencies, led by the Mandeville Police Department, and the arrest includes both hate crimes and criminal damage to property charges.
Please click here to read the entire statement.
Older Americans Act / TIME for Holocaust Survivors Act
The JCRC is proud to report that in early March, both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives unanimously approved a bill to reauthorize the Older Americans Act. The legislation makes notable improvements in the delivery of home- and community-based services for seniors, while notably also incorporating provisions from the Trauma-Informed Modernization of Eldercare (TIME) for Holocaust Survivors Act.
The Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans is one of over 300 national, state, and local organizations from every state in the country that signed on to this letter to U.S. Senators in June 2019 in support of the TIME Act.
Doing Business in Israel: Politics, the Economy & the Upcoming Elections
April 1, 2019
Approximately 75 people attended a reception and panel discussion at the Port of New Orleans on how politics in Israel and economics intersect, with a special focus on the April 2019 election in Israel. Moderated by Fox 8's Lee Zurik, the panel featured Ambassador Yoram Ettinger (former Minister for Congressional Affairs at Israel's Embassy in Washington), Dr. Leonary Ray (Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at Louisiana State University), Rabbi Reuven Spolter (Director of the Israel Ministry for Diaspora Affairs' Amiel BaKehila program), and Guy Tessler (President of Connexx: America Israel Business Connector).
Trade, Water, and Economic Development: A Debrief on Louisiana's Partnership with Israel
January 28, 2019
On Monday, January 28, the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans was delighted to collaborate with a number of community organizations for a special evening on trade and economic development with Governor John Bel Edwards. Hosted by the University of New Orleans, the event followed Gov. Edwards’ trip to Israel last fall, and featured the Governor discussing both his travel experience and his vision for the trade partnership between Louisiana and Israel in the future.
The Governor’s remarks were preceded by a panel discussion featuring Commissioner of the Division of Administration for the State of Louisiana, Jay Dardenne; President and CEO of The Water Institute of the Gulf, Justin Ehrenwerth; and Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer for the Port of New Orleans, Robert Landry.
Ehrenwerth spoke at length about how both Louisiana and Israel can participate in information sharing and best practices on the critical issue of water management. Bobby Landry discussed trade traffic between the Port of New Orleans and Israel’s major ports, and how Louisiana can benefit from amplifying business relationships with Israel. Jay Dardenne spoke on the issue of start-ups, and how Israel both prioritizes and incentivizes them – a paradigm he feels can be applied to some degree across Louisiana to benefit small businesses and entrepreneurship.
All three panelists shared meaningful personal experiences they had on the trip, from meeting IDF soldiers, celebrating mass at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and praying at the Western Wall.
Governor Edwards then took the stage to debrief the attendees, sharing both his personal reflections on the trip and his ideas for future economic partnerships. For him, the experience was a working trip, with 22 meetings over the 4-day visit. These included a meeting with Israel Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, which lasted over an hour. Of personal significance were his visits to the Golan Heights, from which he could see Syria, and the holiness of the country. He later took audience questions, engaging directly with those in attendance.
Special thanks to our co-sponsors: ADL, AIPAC, GNO, Inc., Israel's Consulate General to the Southwest United States, National Council of Jewish Women: Greater New Orleans Section, the New Orleans Business Alliance, the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce, the Port of New Orleans, Tulane University, and the World Trade Center New Orleans.