Urgent action needed by educators to confront anti-Israel proposals on July 3-6, 2022

June 28, 2022

Urgent action needed by educators to confront anti-Israel proposals on July 3-6, 2022

Your Help Is Needed: Take Action on Anti-Israel Proposals at the NEA Conference

Each summer, nearly 7,000 educators, members of the 3 million-member-strong National Education Association (NEA), meet at its annual conference, known as its Annual Meeting & Representative Assembly (RA). This year delegates will meet at the RA in person and online from July 3-6, 2022.

At these Representative Assemblies, delegates discuss and vote on what are called New Business Items (NBIs). NBIs that are accepted are in essence “action items,” and inform the work of the NEA for the coming year.

This year, there are three NBIs (NBI 1, NBI 9, and NBI 13) that focus on Palestinians and are either explicitly or implicitly anti-Israel in nature. These NBIs are directly at odds with NEA’s principles of inclusivity, diversity and tolerance, and above all, respecting facts.

If you are an educator, you may be or know NEA members or delegates to the RA. We urge you to use your voice to help stop these dangerous NBIs by supporting and/or joining the NEA Jewish Affairs Caucus’ (JAC), which is a recognized and respected caucus within the union.

The JAC is focusing most of its energies in the next two weeks on working to oppose passage of NBIs 1, 9 and 13.The JAC has talking points on all three NBIs, and will share them with NEA members, whether Delegates or not.Key elements in their objections include:

  • These three NBIs focus solely on the Palestinians, especially children, and their plight, without showing any understanding that Israelis also have legitimate rights and concerns.
  • There are many human rights and civil rights violations and abuses across the globe, many of which have children as victims, and it is misleading and wrong to single out only the challenges confronting Palestinians.
  • Palestinians and Palestinian organizations have been perpetrators of human and civil rights violations.

NOTE: Similar NBIs have been submitted and voted down in the past. We can’t take it for granted that this will happen again.

If you know an educator, pass this on to them. If you are an educator yourself, here is what you can do:

➔ If you are an NEA member, contact Karen Bloom, kbloom@hadassah.org, Co-chair of the Hadassah Educators Council and member of the Jewish Affairs Caucus, who will connect you with the Caucus.

➔ If you are a delegate, contact Karen for more specific information about the NBIs and planned actions.

➔ Please contact the presidents of your state NEAs, and voice your opposition to these three NBIs.

➔ If you are a current or retired public school employee, you may be a member of the NEA. If you're not sure, check the map here: https://www.nea.org/nea-affiliates. If your state has a local and/or state NEA affiliate, join them! This way, you'll not only have a better understanding of how the NEA works, but you can also join the Jewish Affairs Caucus.

➔ Join the Hadassah Educators Council (now in development) by sending your name and email address to educatorscouncil@hadassah.org

➔ For more information, email Karen Bloom at kbloom@hadassah.org