This week in Canadian Jewish Advocacy | June 11, 2023

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|June 11, 2023
This Week in Canadian Jewish Advocacy

This week, we celebrated our work to foster interfaith relations and dialogue and called on our government to increase diplomatic pressure on Uganda.

Read on to learn more.  

The CIJA Team  

CIJA presented the Victor Goldbloom Award, which recognizes Interfaith leadership, to Bruce J. Clemenger, Senior Ambassador and President Emeritus of The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC), to honour his lifelong dedication to interfaith relations and dialogue, which often involves difficult conversations based on fundamentally divergent perspectives.

Overcoming differences on theological and social issues, Bruce facilitated the declaration of dialogue and partnership between the EFC and CIJA, which notes "our communities share many foundational values, interests and concerns that allow joint advocacy initiatives,” facilitating discussion on important issues such as palliative care, affordable housing, religious freedom in Canada, and peace and security in the Middle East.

Past recipients of the Victor Goldbloom Award are Bishop John A. Boissonneau, Catholic Auxiliary Bishop of Archdiocese of Toronto; Bishop Bruce Myers, Anglican Bishop of Quebec City; Professor Jean Duhaime, Professor of Religion at Université de Montréal; and Chief Robert Joseph, hereditary Chief of the Gwawaenuk First Nation and founder and current Ambassador for Reconciliation Canada.

The recently enacted Anti-Homosexuality Act signed into law in Uganda by President Yoweri Museveni on May 29 is one of the harshest in the world. It calls for life imprisonment for anyone convicted of homosexuality, 20 years in federal prison for anyone ‘promoting’ homosexuality, up to seven years in federal prison for landlords renting to homosexual individuals or couples, and capital punishment for “aggravated homosexuality.” The entire Ugandan LGBTQ2+ community is now in imminent danger.

On June 5, Jess Burke, CIJA's Director of LGBTQ2+ Partnerships, wrote Melanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, to express CIJA’s grave concern regarding the systematic, state-sanctioned persecution of LGBTQ2+ people in Uganda and to implore that Canada increase diplomatic pressure on Uganda to rescind its Anti-Homosexuality Act. The letter also requested government funding for Rainbow Railroad and The Centre for African Refugees, two organizations that attempt to save the lives of queer and transgender Ugandans fleeing persecution.


Former Prime Minister of Israel Naftali Bennett will be in Toronto on June 14 at Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center’s annual State of the Union where he will share his insights into the State of Israel and the road ahead. The discussion will be moderated by Heather Reisman, Founder and Executive Chair of Indigo Inc.

CIJA in the News 

Community Calendar

October 16-17 Antisemitism: Face It, Fight It
June 24 | Fête Nationale du Québec
July 1 | Canada Day


CIJA is hiring:

Chief Executive Officer, Jewish Federation of Winnipeg

The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is the advocacy agent of Jewish Federations across Canada

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The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) is the advocacy agent of Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA, representing Jewish Federations across Canada. By clicking "Sign up," you consent to receive periodic updates from CIJA. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Le Centre consultatif des relations juives et israéliennes (CIJA) est l'agence de représentation de Fédérations juives du Canada - UIA, représentant les fédérations juives à travers le Canada. En cliquant sur  «  Sign up , »  vous acceptez de recevoir des mises à jour périodiques de CIJA. Vous pouvez vous désabonner à tout moment.
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The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is the advocacy agent of Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA, representing Jewish Federations across Canada.
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