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Rachel Landman

After decades of being "one of the world’s most persecuted minorities,” as designated by the United Nations, recent elections in Myanmar may provide a hint of hope for the Rohingya Muslim community. The Rohingya Muslims have faced ongoing persecution – we must continue to act to end their plight and to support religious freedom throughout the world. 

Although they have lived in Myanmar, formerly Burma, for generations, a discriminatory law passed in 1982 denied the Rohingya’s right to citizenship. Forced to seek refuge across Southeast Asia, an estimated 140,000 Rohingya Muslims...

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There are many reasons to celebrate Tu BiSh’vat this year, as this has been an exciting year for environmental justice. Tu BiSh’vat, the New Year of the Trees, is celebrated on the 15th (tu) of the Hebrew month of Sh’vat, this year falling on January 25. There are many ways to celebrate Tu BiSh’vat, including hosting a Seder or planting trees. But, before we jump into festivities, let’s take some time to reflect on the past year because as with all new years, Tu BiSh’vat offers a time to reflect on past achievements, and to construct new goals around environmental justice.


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Although it is finally getting cold and starting to feel like winter, you may have noticed unseasonably warm temperatures and minimal snowfall last month. While here on the East Coast we are facing record breaking warm temperatures, across the country and world there has been an increase in extreme weather instances. Many of these extreme events have been attributed to El Niño.

El Niño is a weather phenomenon that is characterized by a change in wind patterns that cause warmer ocean surface temperatures. This increases extreme weather along the equator, causing floods in areas such...

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"You are home. Welcome home."

This is what Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said to the first resettled Syrian refugees as they arrived in Toronto earlier this month. In response to the largest global refugee crisis since World War II, with 60 million people displaced worldwide, including over 11 million from Syria and the Middle East, Canada has pledged to resettle 25,000 refugees from Syria by the end of February 2016, including 10,000 by the end of this year. Compared to the commitment of the U.S. to accept 10,000 refugees by the end of 2016, this is an ambitious goal, but one...

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During this holiday season, which highlights the diversity of religious traditions that are celebrated in communities throughout the world, we are moved to think about those who do not the same freedom to celebrate as we do in the United States. Earlier this month, the Jewish community celebrated Hanukkah, a holiday that commemorates an ancient battle for religious freedom, which the Jews fought and won.  While this is a celebration of our victory of the past, it is a current fight for many communities throughout the world.

A recent Pew Research study found that in 2013, 77% of the...

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