Featured Ads

Federation: You can take action regarding recent Israeli policies

Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City — along with Jewish Federations of North America, the Jewish Agency for Israel, Keren HaYesod, and the World Zionist Organization — is currently working on the front lines to challenge two very recent actions taken by the government of Israel:

• The Israeli government suspended its January 2016 historic decision to create an egalitarian prayer space at the Kotel (Western Wall). This change included significantly expanding and upgrading the egalitarian prayer space in the southern part of the Western Wall and placing it under the control of a committee composed of representatives of the Reform and Conservative movements and several other organizations.

• The Israeli Ministerial Committee approved a bill that would require the State of Israel to recognize only conversions to Judaism implemented under the supervision of Israel’s Chief Rabbinate. This same bill would, for the first time ever, give the Chief Rabbinate a monopoly on conversion in Israel. As of last Friday, June 30, the Israeli government agreed not to move the legislation forward for six months. The prime minister will set up a committee to review the issue and deliver a resolution during this time period.

“These actions by the government of Israel have a deep potential to divide the Jewish people and to undermine the Zionist vision and dream to establish Israel as a national home for the entire Jewish people,” said Karen D. Pack, Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City board member. She also serves as a Jewish Agency for Israel board committee member, and as its board fundraising chair.

“Jewish Federations have always been on the front lines of Israel policy, as it relates to American Jewry. Our goal is to continue to push for policies that build bridges between Israel and world Jewry. As such, we will continue to combat actions that threaten to undermine the special relationship Jewish people around the world have with the State of Israel,” said Dr. Helene Lotman, president and CEO of Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City.

“American Jews are so fortunate to have these highly regarded organizations advocating on these issues. However, we are encouraging individuals concerned with these policy shifts to take action as well,” said Pack. 

Suggested action items include: 

• Contact Kansas City’s Consulate General of Israel at 24 Greenway Plaza, Suite 1500, Houston, TX 77046 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

• Send a letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu via Dani Wassner, director of government relations for Jewish Federations of North America, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to express your concerns. 

“Once they hear the many voices of American Jewry, I am hopeful that Israel will understand the gravity of its steps and reverse its course of action,” Pack said.