All you have to do is turn on the news to witness the pervasive epidemic of harassment gripping our society. The list of high-profile individuals being accused of lewd and lascivious acts grows by the week. And just days ago lines were drawn and repercussions swift after a celebrity’s racist and insensitive (and now deleted) tweet went viral.
Maybe it’s our shared values of Tzedakah (upholding the tradition of righteousness), and Tikkun Olam (repairing the world), and Hineni (standing with others so no one stands alone), or maybe it’s the Golden Rule: Treat others the way you want to be treated. No matter the reason, calling out harassment—in any form it takes—and putting an end to it is our collective responsibility.
It’s for this reason that we decided, with the help of several Board and staff members, to rewrite the Alliance’s anti-harassment policy. We had a policy in place, but after reviewing it several months ago we found it to be dated and generic. This new policy sets forth the Alliance’s position on harassment that, whether sexual harassment or harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other unlawful characteristic will not be tolerated.
We recognize that a policy like this is only as good as its implementation. We are currently planning training for staff, Board members, and volunteers to ensure everyone understands the policy and its importance. Additionally, we will be offering training in the fall to our partner agencies and synagogues, because as a community, we cannot tolerate mistreatment of others.
At the Alliance, we believe it’s of the utmost importance that each individual has the right to work and participate in a professional environment in which everyone is treated with respect and dignity. I am proud to work with a Board of Directors and an organization that understands the importance of taking these actions. Not only is a formal policy like this necessary in today’s world, but it’s the right thing to do.
Wishing you a peaceful Shabbat,
Adam Greenman, President & CEO