Jewish Community Subject of First LGBT-Inclusion Index

November 12, 2012

By Helen Chernikoff, Staff Writer

New York The Jewish Week: Connecting the World to Jewish News, Culture, and Opinion

About 100 Jewish organizations are taking significant steps to welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered individuals and families, according to an “inclusion index” released today by the Human Rights Campaign, the LGBT civil rights organization.

In partnership with the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, the Morningstar Foundation, Stuart Kurlander and an anomymous donor, the campaign made the Jewish world the subject of its first index for a faith-based community.

Image of Idit Klein smiling at the camera.

The result is the Jewish Organization Equality Index, which provides benchmarks for gauging LGBT policies and practices at North American Jewish communal organizations.

The 204 organizations that participated in the survey that produced the index were about 10 percent of those invited, a number the campaign says is typical.

About 80 percent have not targeted the LGBT communityfor recruitment, and about 60 percent haven’t done diversity or inclusion training the past three years.

But almost 100 percent of the participating organizations that offer memberships also offer them to same-sex families, and 90 percent use inclusive language in their publicity materials.

“This report marks a milestone in the Jewish community,” said Idit Klein, who runs Keshet, the Jewish LGBT advocacy organization. “We hope it will galvanize our leaders to make LGBT inclusion a priority.”


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