Week of October 5, 2020

The Tzedek Racial Justice Initiative had a general meeting in late August with reports from the subcommittees. Please click HERE for the minutes of that meeting. The next general meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 20 at 7:30 pm. The zoom link will be made available closer to the date.


Springfield No One Leaves (www.springfieldnooneleaves.org) is a grass roots organization that organizes residents most directly impacted by the housing crisis and economic inequality to build collective power, defend against displacement and win long-term community ownership and control over land and housing. We highlighted this organization recently. They need a volunteer for a few hours a week who is proficient with Word Press to help them with their website. Interested people could contact Aaron Berman of our Tzedek Initiative at aberman@hampshire.edu or Rose Webster-Smith of SNOL at rose@springfieldnooneleaves.org


As the Jewish Community of Amherst’s Tzedek Racial Justice Initiative continues to learn about, and work in coalition for racial equity in Amherst, we want to share our support for the following community and town efforts to date. We look forward to seeing the fruits of these efforts in the near future, as we join with many others to translate our commitment to racial justice into tangible actions, in Amherst and beyond. Click HERE to read a copy of the letter we are sending to the Town Manager, the Town Council and the Amherst Indy.


The Criminal Justice Action Group of the Tzedek Initiative urges you to support this action on police reform: Police Reform Bill – H.4889/S.2821. Let’s make the push to get the legislature to act now on police reform! Support Black leaders speaking out and counteract the influence of police unions. The bill is stalled in conference committee. The Boston Globe said in an editorial last month: It is now or never for police reform in Massachusetts. Let’s make is NOW! Link to sign the petition: http://chng.it/G8pFnvvq. In addition to signing the petition, click HERE to learn how to email the conference committee and call your own legislators to in support of the letter signed by groups across the state:


Shelter Sunday in Amherst is on Sunday, October 18, with proceeds supporting Not Bread Alone and Craig’s Doors. This year there will be no door-to-door solicitation, only mailings, and donations can be made by check or online. As one might have expected, both programs have experienced an increase in the number of people in need of a meal, shelter, and other supports during the pandemic. These local programs did not miss a beat in adjusting their operations to meet Covid safety guidelines, but they need our support. Please consider a donation to help those in need in our community. Make checks payable to Shelter Sunday Amherst, and mail to: Shelter Sunday Amherst, PO Box 264, Amherst, MA 01004, or donate at: https://www.sheltersunday.org