It is amazing how many different types of religious freedom issues came across my desk recently. The list included custody battles, rights of disposition (more on that in a future newsletter), definition of death, and what Agudath Israel of America’s executive vice president referred to as “an egregious form of discrimination against Orthodox Jews in New York (see below).” Agudath Israel and its network of volunteer attorneys can’t solve every religious freedom issue facing the Orthodox Jewish community, but thanks to your support we are making important headway.
Another area where our attorney network is helping is in ensuring that institutions and individuals have the necessary information to comply with the intricacies of law, especially as it applies to nonprofits and government benefits (see below for details on 1,000+ person event in Lakewood).
One of the perks of my job is getting to travel to visit Jewish communities around the country. While in Denver for the ALEC conference this week, I had the pleasure of attending a meeting of Orthodox community leaders organized by our newest branch, Agudath Israel of Colorado, and discussing ways for them to increase their political engagement.
One of the keynote speakers at the ALEC conference was Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos who spoke about the importance of investing in individual students, empowering teachers, and the need for state solutions to education issues. The conference was an excellent opportunity to meet with legislators from across the country and to collaborate with our school choice partners American Federation for Children, EdChoice, and the Foundation for Excellence in Education.