Volume XXI | June 2022
Linking you to creating a more civil and caring community in WNY
Powered by the Buffalo Jewish Federation
Co-Chairs: Deborah Goldman and Adam Fogel
Director: Mara Koven-Gelman
Rabbinic Consultant: Rabbi Alex Lazarus-Klein
Racial Justice Coordinator: Rachel Beerman
Student Intern: Hannah Gabelnick
Our work falls into three broad areas: Social Justice, Combatting Hate and Discrimination, and Building Relationships with Ethnic, Faith, and Cultural Communities.

Response To Buffalo Shooting May 14, 2022

Immediate, short and long term action –
the aftermath of a tragic Buffalo Shooting
Changing Disparities and Building Relationships
By Deborah Goldman, Adam Fogel, and Mara Koven-Gelman
Many in the Jewish and general community are asking – “What can we do to stand in support of the Black community after the horrific white supremacist fueled-hate on May 14 that left 10 Black people killed and 3 others injured at Tops Market on Jefferson Avenue?”

As members of the Buffalo Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) dedicated to building a more caring and civil community, we created immediate, short and long-term responses following the guidance of Buffalo Black-led organizations.

Immediate: Like many in our community, we reached out to our friends and community partners to share our horror and compassion. We wrote a powerful statement that focused on the reality that this was Black racism. We attended and helped lead interfaith vigils, and worked with our JFS who provided a list of resources where people could contribute mental health expertise, time, food and funds. We dropped off food and groceries and hosted meals so that our friends could share their grief.

Short Term: We will continue amplifying all the Black-led organizations who are providing food, mental health care and volunteer opportunities. There is strong need for immediate services, but this is not sustainable. Some of these organizations include Buffalo Community Fridge, Resource Center of WNY, Buffalo Urban League and Black Love Resists in the Rust, African Heritage Food Co-op and Open Buffalo.

Long Term: There are many longer-term issue to address. They include: Combatting white supremacy and anti-Black and antisemitic hate; Gun Control/Safety; Diversity, Equity and Belonging work throughout Buffalo and it's surrounding communities; Changing the disparities by chiseling away at social determinants of health such as economic, social, housing, education, and health disparities; and Building sustainable relationships with our neighbors.

Voting is our way to make our voices heard in government to advocate for the world we want to live in. This includes equity for all communities. JCRC hopes to see you at the polls! There are three important elections this summer.
  • JUNE 21: Williamsville Village Board
  • JUNE 28: NYS Governor, NYS Assembly, statewide offices, judicial delegate Primaries
  • AUGUST 23: US Congregational and NYS Senate Primaries
SUNDAY, JULY 24: JCRC Visits East Side Garden Walk. Contact Rachel Beerman for more information. Learn more about East Side Garden Walk.

MONDAY, JUNE 27 AT 5 PM: Panel on Reproductive Choice: Rabbinic, Medical and Legal Perspectives. Register here.
JCRC Leader Spotlights: Corey Auerbach and Marc Brown
by Hannah Gabelnick
Here are two active Jewish community leaders who have been instrumental in creating a more equitable greater Buffalo community.
Corey Auerbach chairs the Buffalo Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) Racial Justice Sub-Committee and is a member of the JCRC Executive Committee. He is also a member of the Buffalo Jewish Federation Board of Governors, Jewish Men’s Group, Mussar for Men, Campaign for Jewish Buffalo Cabinet, and the Belonging Conference Planning Team. Professionally, Corey is a partner at Barclay Damon, where he chairs the Land Use and Zoning Practice Area and serves as the firm wide Hiring Partner. Read the full article here.
Marc Brown is a member of the Buffalo Jewish Federation Board of Governors, JCRC’s Racial Justice Sub-Committee, and the Jewish Buffalo History Center Work Team. He is a member of the Young Israel Synagogue, where he is one of the Vice Presidents of the Board, and treasurer of the Buffalo V’ad Hakashrut. Marc was also the Kadimah School Co-President. Professionally, Marc is a partner at Goldberg Segalla LLP. Read the full article here.
Update on Legislative Forum Priorities
Deborah Goldman
JCRC co-chair
Adam Fogel
JCRC co-chair
The JCRC Legislative Forum held on February 18, 2022 seems like a lifetime ago. Two pieces of legislation JCRC advocated for have been approved by the NYS House and Senate.

  • Office of Equity and Social Justice - to oversee changes in policy, practice and allocation of state resources so that race or social justice constructs do not predict an individual's success, while also improving opportunities and outcomes for all people.

  • Federal Nonprofit Security Grant Program. JCRC helped advocate for a successful FY 2022 increase from $180 to $250 million. JCRC also helped advocate for a FY 2023 increase from $250 to $360 million. Both US Representatives Chris Jacobs and Brian Higgins signed both appropriation letters.
Continue Supporting Friends in the Black Community
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The Community of Uvalde,Texas

In partnership with Jewish Family Service of San Antonio and the Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas, funds are being raised to provide summer programs, including therapeutic training for volunteers and professionals to support everyone impacted by the horrific events at Robb Elementary School.
Corey Auerbach
Lana Benatovich
Ann Marie Carosella
Molly Carr
Susan Grelick
Harvey Sanders