Statement: Executive Order on Refugees
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The Torah teaches, “You shall not wrong or oppress a stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” As Jews, we know all too well the consequences of nations turning away those fleeing persecution. We can never forget the fate of the countless number of Jews whose lives could have been saved during the Holocaust had the United States accepted them as refugees. As Jews and Americans, we must continue to uphold our shared value of welcoming the stranger regardless of religion, race, or nationality.
Therefore, the Jewish Federation of Cleveland opposes the recent Executive Order that has closed our nation’s doors to refugees, even if only temporarily. Any government action that closes our doors to refugees and the oppressed contradicts our Jewish values and the values of our nation of compassion, equality, and justice. Religious tests have no place in our government's policies. As our nation secures its borders with thorough vetting and seeks to combat extremism, we must never lose sight of the fundamental values that define our country and our people.
Stephen H. Hoffman
Gary L. Gross
Bradley J. Schlang
Community Relations Committee Chair