Marking the steps forward in movement for LGBT equality

Mae Singerman

Mazel Tov to all of the Jewish Social Justice Roundtable organizations that made the grade in the Jewish Organization Equality Index. The JSJR orgs that got the highest score of "inclusion" were:

American Jewish World Service


Jewish Council for Public Affairs

Jews United for Justice

JOIN for Justice

National Council of Jewish Women

New Israel Fund

Rabbis for Human Rights

Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

Repair the World

Union of Reform Judaism

Check out this article "Raising the bar of LGBT Inclusion within the Jewish world" in the Washington Post that discusses the project from the perspective of the funder, Lynn Schusterman of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation.

As times have changed over the past ten years, the magnitude of the difference in these findings suggest that many Jewish organizations have been proactive in their efforts to be inclusive—even when resources and information are limited.

But the findings also highlight significant need for improvement, especially in employee recruitment, actively enlisting LGBT individuals to serve on lay leadership boards (often cited as the most significant contributor to increased awareness about inclusive policies); and completing diversity and inclusion training. Even with bully-related violence on the rise, a majority of the participating organizations with youth programs still lack written anti-bullying policies.

LGBT equality is not a political agenda or denominational issue. It is a human issue that plays out in individual lives and families, in classrooms and boardrooms, in camp cabins and offices