For Immediate Release
October 5, 2016
Halifax, NS – Today, at its annual general meeting, Halifax Pride defeated a resolution that called for the banning of Size Doesn’t Matter (SDM) and other materials at Pride that showcase the achievements of Israel’s LGBTQ community. SDM is a Canadian program run by the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA), which highlights Israeli culture, technology, lifestyle, and values. SDM events and products are often seen on campus and at Pride festivals across Canada.
For many Jewish Canadians, especially LGBTQ Jews, SDM provides an opportunity to express a core part of their identity: their connection with Israel and LGBTQ Israelis. For several years in Halifax, the Atlantic Jewish Council (AJC) has made use of SDM materials while leading a contingent of LGBTQ and allied Jewish community members participating in annual Pride events.
“We applaud Halifax Pride for rejecting this resolution, which singled out the Jewish community for censorship,” said Naomi Rosenfeld, Executive Director of the Atlantic Jewish Council. “Halifax Pride’s decision tonight ensures its core values of inclusion and equality will be upheld at future events. The AJC is grateful to our friends in the LGBTQ community who opposed the censorship resolution. In so doing, they have ensured that the AJC, LGBTQ Jews, and the Jewish community at large can share their full, authentic identities at Pride celebrations.”
“We commend Halifax Pride for upholding freedom and inclusion by voting against this effort to discriminate against the Jewish community,” said Shimon Koffler Fogel, CEO of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs. “No Pride in Canada has adopted a policy of censorship as was proposed in Halifax. For many Jewish Canadians, particularly LGBTQ Jews, pride in Israel and the achievements of the LGBTQ community are a core part of one’s identity. Tonight’s decision is a victory for Pride’s own values and a clear sign that the organized Jewish community, as a strong supporter of LGBTQ rights and freedoms, remains welcome as a fully equal member of Pride.”
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) is the advocacy agent of the Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA.
For more information, please contact:
Deputy Director, Communications and Public Affairs
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA)