Disabilities and Inclusion | Reconstructing Judaism
Disabilities and Inclusion

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This report, issued in 1994, was the work product of JRF's Task Force on Inclusion for People with Disabilities.

Rabbi Michelle Greenfield examines Biblical and rabbinic sources on disability. She examines the use and misuse of Hebrew texts that are often quoted when talking about inclusion of people with different abilities. Her English commentary provides a deeper understanding of these texts' strengths and limitations.

This compilation of quotes from various text sources conveys Jewish values regarding people with special needs.

To become a truly inclusive commnuity, we need to make room for conversation about our personal responses to people with disabilities, and how each of us can overcome anxiety or concern and move into friendship and understanding.

Reconstructing Judaism and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association were among the 55 national Jewish groups joining together in a letter to Senate leaders opposing the House-passed ADA Education and Reform Act (H.R. 620), legislation which would turn back the clock on the civil rights of people with disabilities by weakening the 28-year old Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

In an article for the New York Jewish Week, Gabrielle Kaplan-Meyer describes the challenges families face in planning for the future of children with cognitive disabilities. 

With a welcoming ethos and a drive to break down barriers, Reconstructionist congregations and havurot have been part of a revolution that’s taken place in the public awareness of the importance of disability inclusion and related services.

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