The Union for Reform Judaism has long advocated for children, the poor, the elderly, the sick, the disabled, and the "stranger among us." In 1965, we affirmed that the amelioration of poverty is a societal obligation not of charity but of justice. We have also called for social welfare entitlement programs (1965) and income maintenance programs wholly or largely financed by the federal government to meet the basic need of those who are unable to work and those working with inadequate income (1971).
In 1981, we opposed policies "that place an unfair burden on the unemployed, the poor, the near-poor, minorities, and the elderly and children." In 1995, we affirmed our economic commitment to America's poor and called upon the United States government to maintain its responsibility to ensure an adequate, federally guaranteed safety net to protect our nation's most vulnerable populations.
We also opposed the use of block grants to the states when such grants were used to end entitlement programs or as a means to decrease the obligations of the federal and state governments to the poor, the sick, the elderly, and the disabled. This was reaffirmed in the most recent Union resolution on poverty, the 2003 "Resolution on Confronting and Combating Poverty in the United States," in which the Union resolved to "oppose changes to the ... Child Nutrition programs ... that would harm eligible families or individuals who are poor or shift federal responsibility for these programs to the states."
Resolutions on Hunger and Food Insecurity
Union for Reform Judaism
Resolution on World Hunger (1975)
Central Conference of American Rabbis
Resolution on Hunger (1975)
Resolution on Hunger and Food Banks (1983)
Resolution on World Hunger (1985)
Resolution on New Jewish Fund for Hunger (1985)
Resolution on Ethiopian Jewry and Hunger (1985)