NCJW July 2020 News and Events
It may be July with the lazy, hazy days of summer upon us, but here at NCJW Chicago North Shore, we’re celebrating a new year. Our 2020-21 Board of Directors began their term on July 1st and are already hard at work planning virtual programming to keep you informed on today's most pressing issues, to keep you connected with other NCJW members, and to keep growing our voices to help those who are the most vulnerable in our communities. 

Obviously, the first six months of 2020 have not been what any of us expected when we toasted in the New Year on January 1st, but it has given each of us TIME. Time to reflect rather than react, to find new purpose, and to thoughtfully plan what we as individuals and as an organization can contribute to the healing of our society. 

At our Zoom Installation Celebration, I shared some words of wisdom from my yoga teacher that I’d like to share again here. Before each class, she reminds us that the magic happens in the pauses - when we take time to breathe and focus on our intention. The pandemic has forced us to pause. This pause from what was normal gives us time to redefine a new normal - one that is better for all - and if you ask me that would be magical. I hope everyone will join and support our 2020-21 NCJW CNS Board of Directors and help make the magic happen. Stay safe and stay healthy.

Debbie Vietinghoff, Board President
NCJW Chicago North Shore
Anti-racism is a Verb
NCJW CNS stands in solidarity with the Black community and is committed to addressing
systemic racism.

Join us to make Anti-Racism a Verb! Learn, Do, and Act.

We are committed to educating ourselves, strengthening our relationship with Black community partners, lifting up Black voices in our community, supporting Black businesses and artists, advocating for policy change and working side by side in communities.

We want you and your families to join us on this journey. In the coming weeks and months, we will offer webinars, a self-awareness 18-week Chai challenge, and a multi-generational anti-racism Book Club. Watch for more information about these soon!

We all know that our actions speak louder than words. As advocates, we will continue our policy work, informed by a heightened awareness of its racial justice implications. Policy work is where we can make real change to eliminate systemic racism. Watch for action alerts and commit to adding your voice.

We are, also, working to find both virtual-volunteer and when safety allows, in-person direct service opportunities to support organizations doing the hard work in our Black communities. Commit to join us in these meaningful mitzvot.

We will launch our Anti-Racism is a Verb initiative in the coming weeks. In the meantime, here are a few suggestions that you can all do right NOW:

If you have more ideas for how to make Anti-Racism a Verb, please join our team by
contacting Debbie Vietinghoff at
Please welcome our new members:

  • Susan Miller-Golovan
  • Devin La Mantia
  • Vicki Meilach 
  • Sylvia Meyers
  • Jane Schechter
  • Barbara Turner
  • Gail Weisberg
NCJW Tribute Cards
An NCJW Chicago North Shore Tribute is a thoughtful way to acknowledge a life event while supporting NCJW’s many valuable projects. Send an NCJW Tribute Card for any amount (minimum of $15) to be sent by NCJW Chicago North Shore to the recipient of your choice.

To order a Tribute online, click here . If you prefer to purchase a tribute using a check, please make your check payable to: “NCJW CNS” and mail to: NCJW, 5 Revere Drive, Suite 200, Northbrook, IL 60062.

Please include the recipient’s complete name and mailing address as well as your complete name and address and either a phone number or email should we need to contact you regarding your tribute. Please also include the reason for Tribute (birthday, anniversary, in memory of, etc.) or any specific message you would like to include.
Recent Tributes
To: Debbie Friedman, 
From: The NCJW CNS Board
In memory of your mother, Mildred Miller

To Carole Levine
From: The NCJW CNS Board
In memory of your father, Russell Remick

To Carole Levine
From: Jan Schwartz
In memory of your father, Russ Remick

To Rae Luskin
From: The NCJW CNS Board
In memory of Bob Luskin
To Carole Levine
From: Jane and Lewis Ramsey
In memory of Russell Remick 

To Carole Levine
From: Mary Ann Johnson
In memory of Russell Remick 

To Carole Levine
From: C. Betty Magness
In memory of Russ Remick 

To Judy Whellan
From: The NCJW CNS Board
In memory of Floyd Whellan
NCJW 2020 Installation Celebration Recap
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT... On June 24, we had a wonderful Zoom board installation and celebration. We celebrated our board and welcomed 4 new passionate board-members-at-large! Watch your mailboxes at the end of the summer for a brief bio each of the strong, amazing women who make up our 2020-21 Board of Directors. If you missed it, click here to watch the video!
We said goodbye to 6 outstanding women who have served our section well over the past years. We can't thank them enough for all that they have done and we are sure that they will stay involved with our section!
We also were entertained by the amazingly talented singer/songwriter Lisa Fishman. Lisa shared her beautiful voice and spoke about her life, music, Yiddish Fiddler and more. To hear more from Lisa, visit her website:
Monday, July 13, 7:00 PM
R U Ready to Vote: July 13 City Salon
Governor JB Pritzker signed SB 1863 and HB 2238 into law on June 16th. During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, these bills ensure safe and active participation in the 2020 general election. Vote by mail (VBM) applications will go out to all recent voters in Illinois. The legislation also expands early voting hours at permanent polling places, improves the signature verification process and makes Election Day a state holiday. And more…which will be made clear during the next City Salon. Click here for information and to register.

Tuesday, July 14, 7:00 pm
Coming to America: Immigration Trends & Policies Today
Gain insights into immigration trends, the legal asylum process, and the impact of policy on people. Jessica Schaffer, director of Immigration and Citizenship at the Hebrew Immigration Aid Society (HIAS), takes you beyond the headlines to get a closer look at all aspects of U.S. immigration today. Part of the Coming to America programming series. Click here to register.

Wednesday, July 15, 7:00 pm
Election 2020 Series: What Will Our November Elections Look Like
Join us for an exclusive live interview with our local election boards to learn how Illinois’ new expanded Vote by Mail will ensure safe and secure elections during this time of protest and COVID 19. This is the final program in our Promote the Vote 2020 Summer Election series. Meet DuPage County Clerk, Jean Kaczmarek and Will County Clerk, Lauren Staley Ferry to learn how expanded Vote By Mail will work in your county and what the average voter can do to help elections run smoothly. Click here to register
Election 2020
Follow the 4 Rs so you are ready to vote: Register, Request, Receive & Return!

Tuesday, July 14, 12:00 pm
Courts Matter to Immigration Rights
Join Courts Matter Illinois for the second in a series of webinars examining the role of the federal courts in some of the most important issues to the 2020 election. Click here to register.

Tuesday, July 14, 8:00 AM
How Israeli Women & Families are Overcoming Challenges During Covid-19
There is still uncertainty about the future of the Coronavirus pandemic in Israel as the country is seeing a second wave start. Since the start of the pandemic, women and genderqueer individuals have experienced job loss at higher rates than men and we have seen an increase in the volume and scope of domestic violence against women. Sadly, 9 women were murdered by their spouses during in the first two months. At the same time, Israeli women and community leaders are spearheading creative, forward-thinking, and inspiring initiatives that are advancing gender equality and reducing domestic violence, from which we can learn and bring to communities in the United States. Join us for a “Virtual Israel Tour” in 5 fascinating cities: Tel Aviv, Nazareth, Hod HaSharon, Haifa, and Jerusalem. During the tour, we will have an inspiring conversation with four powerful NCJW advocates who are shaping the feminist agenda in Israel. Click here to register.

Date to be announced
After the Dust has Settled: The Supreme Court Term in Review
With a blockbuster Supreme Court term — the first with Justices Gorsuch and Kavanaugh on the bench — join NCJW and Dahlia Lithwick, who writes about the courts and the law for Slate and hosts the podcast Amicus. From abortion access to LGBTQ rights to firearms to Dreamers, we’ll break down the cases and learn what’s at stake based on the decisions issued this term. We’ll also highlight cases to watch when the next term opens on October 5. You won’t want to miss hearing from Dahlia, one of the most insightful voices on the courts. Register here.
Even where abortion is available in theory, structural barriers resulting from long-standing social and economic inequities often make this basic health care inaccessible or unavailable, disproportionately harming Black communities and people of color, young people, low-income people, people living with disabilities, rural communities, immigrants, and LGBTQ individuals.

Ultimately, we support the right of every person to access the full range of comprehensive, affordable, compassionate, and equitable reproductive health care, including abortion. We call on Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), an important bill that would enact protections on the federal level to safeguard access to care and to secure constitutional rights, as a means to this end. It is the right thing to do.

In early August 2020, the National Council of Jewish Women will host our #AbortionAccess4AllDigital Lobby Day calling on Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA, HR 2975/S 1645) and the EACH Woman Act (HR 1692/S 758). WHPA would invalidate onerous state restrictions blocking access to abortion while the EACH Woman Act would ensure the affordability of this care by ending political interference in public and private insurance coverage. Together, these critical bills have the potential to create a future where all can access the abortion services they need without cost barriers, delays, or burdensome limitations. Join us to urge your lawmakers to champion abortion access for all by supporting WHPA and the EACH Woman Act.

The Women’s Health Protection Act — reintroduced on May 23, 2019, by Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) — would put an end to targeted regulation of abortion provider (TRAP) laws and unconstitutional abortion bans, guaranteeing providers the right to deliver care, free from these medically unnecessary restrictions. Significantly, this critical legislation also establishes a new test for courts to apply when considering whether a requirement impedes access to abortion services in violation of WHPA. Lawmakers on the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health recognized the vital importance of this bill by holding the first proactive hearing on domestic abortion access legislation in almost 30 years on February 12, 2020. We need a federal tool to ensure access to high-quality care across the US and to secure our constitutional rights. Urge your lawmakers to pass WHPA today!

On May 15, the House of Representatives passed the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act (HR 6800), the fourth phase of federal coronavirus response legislation. The package directs more than $3 trillion to state and local governments, health systems, and a wide range of progressive initiatives. Urge your senators to take up the HEROES Act today to address the immediate public health emergency; to support families, workers, and those most impacted by the pandemic; and to prepare for a successful recovery.
Get Involved and Take Action
We wanted to highlight two opportunities for young people to take action. If you know someone who might be interested, please forward the information below.

Serve the Moment
Beginning with a summer of service, we will mobilize young adults and college students, (ages 18-29) through a full-time stipended program from July 8th to August 7th. Serve the Moment Summer Corps Members will focus on addressing and learning about issues that stem from systemic racism and economic injustice, including food insecurity, educational needs, unemployment, social isolation relating to COVID-19, and other pressing needs. The application deadline is July 6! Click here for more information and to apply .

Majority Leaders Summer Leadership Development Program
Supermajority Education Fund Majority Leaders is an incredible summer “Tuesday Teach-In” series with amazing women leaders that will happen every Tuesday between July 14th and August 25th. Majority Leaders will be making connections between their personal journeys with their vision for social change. They’ll grow their skills and knowledge on intersectional feminism, relational organizing, media literacy, voting rights, how to combat misinformation, and so much more. Any young woman — high school up to 35 years of age — and emerging leaders are welcome to apply. The application deadline is July 10. Click here for more information and to apply.
A Victory for Reproductive health Care
This week the National Council of Jewish Women celebrated the Supreme Court’s June Medical Services v. Russo decision, which upheld our constitutionally-protected right to bodily autonomy. While we are relieved that Louisiana’s three clinics can remain open and continue to offer time-sensitive, essential, and compassionate care, this fight is far from over. Congress must pass the Women’s Health Protection Act, with would end unconstitutional abortion bans and guarantee providers the right to deliver care free of medically unnecessary restrictions. Click here to read more.

New National Council of Jewish Women Campaign Urges Rabbis to Fight for Reproductive Freedom
With access to reproductive health care being threatened at every level of government, the National Council of Jewish Women, an organization at the frontlines of the fight for reproductive health, rights, and justice for over 125 years, today launched Rabbis for Repro. The new campaign encourages Jewish clergy to pledge that they will teach about the issue and create an open system of support for reproductive health care access in their communities.  Click here to read more.

500+ Jewish Organizations and Synagogues say: Black Lives Matter
Jewish tradition teaches us that justice is not something that will be bestowed upon us, it is something that we need to pursue, and that the pursuit is itself sacred work. We’ll show up for each other every time one of us is targeted because of our differences, and reject any effort to use fear to divide us against each other. The Black Lives Matter movement is the current day Civil Rights movement in this country, and it is our best chance at equity and justice. By supporting this movement, we can build a country that fulfills the promise of freedom, unity, and safety for all of us, no exceptions. Click here to read more.

Repro Health Laws to Know
While barriers to reproductive health care are not new, COVID-19 has had an unprecedented impact on access to health care services. Some recent changes in Illinois, such as expanded presumptive eligibility and Medicaid reimbursement for pregnancy termination (detailed below) help to expand access to reproductive health services. Other changes, like the impending Supreme Court decision on whether abortion providers should be required to have hospital admitting privileges, still threaten reproductive justice across the country. The Guttmacher Institute found that 15 states are at-risk to enact abortion restrictions if SCOTUS upholds the Louisiana law, including our neighbors in Indiana and Iowa.

All of this underscores the diligence needed to protect, promote, and expand access to all reproductive health services. ACLU of Illinois and Health Management Associates have shared the following context regarding the latest in Illinois policy, and provide resources for sharing with providers and individuals. Click here to read more.
Membership Renewal
Membership renewal has begun. If you are an annual member, you will be receiving a renewal notice in your inbox or mail box in the next week or so. We hope all of our annual members will renew their membership for another year. All NCJW annual memberships run from July 1 through June 30. Renew or join today for $50 and your membership will valid through June 30, 2021.

Your support makes it possible for NCJW to create meaningful social change for women, children, and families locally, nationally and internationally. Together with you, NCJW will empower women to educate their communities, mobilize the grassroots, and advocate for fundamental rights and freedoms.

Click here to renew your membership today or mail your check to NCJW, 5 Revere Drive, Suite 200, Northbrook, IL 60062. Questions? Email
Support NCJW
Chicago North Shore has several new ways to support our section. As always, you can make a one time donation or purchase a tribute (links are below), you can even purchase an NCJW star necklace or hanger charm or become a monthly donor!

Put your dollars to work immediately by making a fast, secure online donation. Choose a one-time donation or give monthly and become an NCJW Sustaining Advocate.

An NCJW Chicago North Shore Tribute is a thoughtful way to acknowledge a life event while supporting NCJW’s many valuable projects. You may purchase an individual tribute or packages of tribute cards.

Looking for a gift or just a different way to support NCJW?

When you shop through AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice. Choose National Council of Jewish Women Chicago North Shore

NCJW is recognized as an organization described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code. Contributions to it are tax deductible to the full extent provided by the law. 

Want to ensure NCJW's legacy for years to come? Are you a life member and want to extend your support in perpetuity? Have you thought out a bequest to NCJW? Already have a bequest to NCJW? Please let us know that you put us in your will so we can acknowledge you!! Email

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are not currently accepting donations of items for our Luggage for Freedom (LFF) Project. If you have items to donate, we hope you are able to hold onto them until we are able to resume collections.

As soon as it is safe for our LFF volunteers to start accepting donations again, we will send out an alert. In the meanwhile, your monetary donations to LFF are always welcome. Visit for more information or to make a donation. Thank you for your understanding and support!