In an historic collaboration, the Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionist and Reform Jewish Movements have come together to form Hineinu, an innovative collaboration of the disability professionals from each stream sharing resources, support and direction in order to increase disability Inclusion in our synagogues for people of all abilities.
The core pillars of the first year of the Hineinu initiative will highlight and share the best practices that are already occurring in many communities with those who are ready to do more by:
• Creating a network of synagogues and professionals among all four movements that will help achieve the goal of making Inclusion efforts a normative part of synagogue life.
• convening community leaders, sharing materials and online resources, networking between lay leadership and disability professionals, and fostering the establishment or growth of synagogue-based Inclusion committees.
• Authoring and sharing a community-wide resource guide with simple and low-cost suggestions for how synagogues can begin to be more disability Inclusive. Each movement has, with its own adaptations for its specific practices, made this resource available on their websites This resource guide would not have been possible without the direction and support of Hineinu.
Special thanks to Deborah Berman, LCSW, and Rabbi Lynne Landsberg, whose guidance and insight were immeasurable.
Thank you to Shelly Christensen for her vision and vast resources, including “the book” on inclusion. What makes this guide so powerful was the true collaboration among the different movements and their commitment increasing inclusion for all people in the Jewish community.
This collaboration could not have been possible without the diverse backgrounds and insights of the Hineinu leadership team, including Dave Feinman, Rabbi Michelle Greenfield, Richard Kammerman, Rabbi Jonah Layman, Rabbi Mordechai Liebling, Rabbi Edythe Mencher, and Daphne Price.
A final thank you goes to the Communications staff of all the Movements for their edits and permission, including Sean Thibault, Andrea Glick, and Wendy Univer.
This guide was compiled by Raechel Banks, Eisendrath Legislative Assistant 2012-2013 at the Religious Action of Reform Judaism.