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Statement Of Evely Laser Shlensky Chairperson, Commission On Social Action Of Reform Judaism On The National Strawberry Commission For Workers' Rights

November 13, 1996 

On behalf of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations and the CentralConference of American Rabbis, representing 850 synagogues, 1800 Reformrabbis and 1.5 million Reform Jews throughout North America, I am pleasedto announce our support for the National Strawberry Commission forWorkers' Rights.

For us, this is a matter of simple justice, of guaranteeing all of God'schildren a sense of human dignity. The goals of the campaign we jointoday -- a living wage, access to clean water and bathrooms while on thejob, health insurance -- are nothing more than the bare minimum we shouldaccept for any of our brothers and sisters.

I am reminded today of Moses, one of history's great labor organizers. Weremember that as the Israelites toiled and suffered in Egypt, Mosesattempted to bargain on their behalf with the Pharaoh. Plague afterplague failed to convince the Pharaoh that one can not abuse one's workerswithout degrading one's own society. Finally, of course, Moses led ourancestors on a great pilgrimage to freedom in the promised land.

In these times as those, we will all be plagued until the poorest laborersamong us are accorded the dignity, fair wages and humane workingconditions they deserve.

The Reform Jewish movement is proud to stand today with AFL-CIO PresidentJohn Sweeney, UFW President Arturo Rodriguez and other distinguished anddedicated Americans as we seek to ensure that this land of promise willdeliver what it promises: justice and dignity for all.

The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, representing 1.5 million Reform Jews and 1,700 Reform rabbis in 850 congregations throughout North America.

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