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Advocacy Update

People with disabilities have many gifts and talents to share, as well as the need for community, support and comfort provided by Jewish organizations.

Participating in Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month in February gives your organization the opportunity to engage your entire community in the important work of ensuring that ALL Jews, without regard to ability, have access to Jewish life-to work, live, love, play, learn and worship as they choose, where they choose, and to contribute to this wonderful place we call our Jewish community.

The Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month Guide provides many resources and ideas to assist you in programming, whether in your own organization or as community-wide initiatives.

Please share your plans for JDAIM with the AJFCA network via the AJFCA Disabilities Services Professionals Facebook page.

The Interfaith Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, of which AJFCA is a member, will host a briefing call on Thursday, January 21st, at 12pm EST for coalition members, clergy, and lay leaders to learn more about the intersection of domestic violence and guns, as well as current legislation that has been introduced to deal with this issue. The call will feature a policy expert and a clergyperson. To sign up, click here.

On September 30 of this year, Congress passed a short term continuing resolution (CR) that kept the government funded through December 11. It was hoped that members of Congress would be able to pass legislation this week, known as an omnibus spending bill, to set funding levels through fiscal year 2016. Unfortunately, as of Thursday, December 10, members in the Senate and the House have still been unable to agree on certain aspects of the legislation. 

On Thursday afternoon, the Senate passed a five day CR, and it appears likely that the House will pass the measure as well. This CR would give lawmakers until midnight on December 16 to finish work on the fiscal 2016 omnibus spending bill. One of the biggest roadblocks that Congress will have to overcome is the desire of some members to include controversial add-ons, known as "riders," to the bill to advance major policy objectives. The most high-profile rider debate has focused on whether or not to include language that would restrict entry of Syrian refugees into the United States. 

AJFCA encourages members of Congress to reach a final agreement by December 16 and to not include divisive riders that could lead to a government shutdown.