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The Jewish Council for Public Affairs

The Mission of the JCPA

 

The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) serves as the representative voice of the organized American Jewish community in addressing the mandate of the Jewish community relations field. The mandate is expressed in two, interrelated goals:

 

·          to safeguard the rights of Jews here, in Israel, and around the world; and, in order to accomplish that,

·          to protect, preserve, and promote a just American society, one that is democratic and pluralistic.

 

These goals are pursued in a non-partisan manner informed by Jewish values. History teaches us that Jewish security is inexorably linked to the strength of democratic institutions. Thus, our community has a direct stake - along with an ethical imperative - in assuring that America remains a country wedded to the Bill of Rights and committed to the rule of law, whose institutions continue to function as a public trust.

 

The JCPA reflects a unique and inclusive partnership of national member agencies, local community relations councils and committees, and the federations of which they are a component part or affiliated agency. It convenes the "common table" around which member agencies, through an open, representative, inclusive and consensus-driven process, meet to identify issues, articulate positions, and develop strategies, programs, and approaches designed to advance the public affairs goals and objectives of the organized Jewish community.

 

The work of the JCPA, especially in matters relating to democratic pluralism and social justice, reflects the profound Jewish commitment to tikkun olam, the repair of the world. It expresses the conviction of the organized Jewish community that it must be active in the effort to build a just society. The JCPA has the responsibility to enhance the capacity of member agencies to effectively pursue the public affairs agenda. This responsibility requires the JCPA to provide coordination, support, and guidance for public affairs initiatives undertaken by national and local member agencies, to advocate on behalf of the public affairs policies of the organized Jewish community, and to respond to those member-identified needs which strengthen their individual and collaborative capacity to advance the communal public affairs agenda.

 

JCPA History

 

The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA), the united voice of the organized Jewish community, was formally established as National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council (NJCRAC) in 1944 by the Council of Jewish Federations. NJCRAC, designed to be the public affairs branch of the organized Jewish community, changed its name in 1997 to the Jewish Council for Public Affairs to more accurately reflect its mission.

 

For over half a century, the JCPA has served as an effective mechanism to identify issues, formulate policy, develop strategies and programs, and has given expression to a strongly united Jewish communal voice. By virtue of the JCPA's unique position and structure, our ability to reach out and motivate Jews and non-Jews alike to action is unparalleled. Through our network of 13 national and 122 local equal and independent partner agencies, the JCPA serves as a catalyst that heightens community awareness, encourages civic and social involvement, and deliberates key issues of importance to the Jewish community.

 

Every year, representatives from Jewish communities across the United States and from the 13 national member agencies of JCPA gather together at the JCPA Annual Plenum to discuss issues and debate resolutions affecting the American Jewish community.

JCPA Resolutions

 

Every year, representatives from Jewish communities across the United States and from the 13 national member agencies of JCPA gather together at the JCPA Annual Plenum to discuss issues and debate resolutions affecting the American Jewish community.

 

For a complete list click here for the JCPA’s Policy Compendium page.