NCJW November 2020 News and Events
Who else has this song going though their head? "One more dawn, one more day, one day more..."

NCJW has been focused on promoting and protecting the vote for ages but our work has become even more vital since the onset of the pandemic. And now we have one more day until the polls close. One more day to use our vote as our voice and raise our voices together. One more day to take action!

✅ If you haven't voted, grab some comfy shoes and head to the polls. Already voted? Reach out three friends and encourage them to vote. Offer to drive them to the polls if necessary!

✅ Stay calm. More people have voted or will vote in this election than ever before. We may not know the results tomorrow night.

✅ Share your iVoted selfie on Facebook or Instagram - make sure to tag @ncjwcns and we might just feature your photo in our voting story.

✅ Join NCJW and more than 25 other Jewish organizations on Tuesday, November 3 at 7pm central for Tikkun Leil Election, a night of community, inspiration and spiritual nourishment. Click here to register.

Our democracy works when everyone votes and every vote is counted. That’s what makes us unique. Conversations at the individual or community level will have the greatest impact in building a shared commitment to accept the outcome of the election. The United States is a resilient country with strong institutions and a long record of peaceful transitions and continuations of power. By uniting across our differences, we can uphold our democracy by ensuring every vote is counted and demanding that the person who we have chosen is sworn in as our president. 

 "The time is now, the day is here.... One Day More......." 
Please Welcome our New Members
Karen Gray-Keeler
Diane Rosenfeld
NCJW Tribute Cards
NCJW Chicago North Shore Tributes are a thoughtful way to acknowledge life events 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.

Click here for information on how to order tributes
Tuesday, November 3, 7:00 pm
Tikkun Leil Election
We know many of you are bracing to be obsessively refreshing Twitter or your favorite news sites on the evening of November 3, or maybe just hiding under the bed. Here’s a better option: Join us for a Tikkun Leil Election on Tuesday 11/3 7-10pm Central. Modeled on the Tikkun Leil Shavuot, where Jews stay up all night studying Torah on Erev Shavuot, this event will offer community, inspiration, and spiritual nourishment. We likely won’t have clear election results on the night of November 3, but we can gather to support each other as we begin to see the emerging picture. Visit for the lineup and to register.

Monday, November 16, 7:00 pm
From Strangers to Sisters: Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom
Our communities share an over 1400-year relationship; as minorities, our religious communities face similar challenges. An international organization, the mission of the Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom is to build trust, respect, and relationships between Muslim and Jewish women. Members commit to stand up for one another when hate is aimed at our communities and engage in social action work that has an impact in our communities.

Samira Qureshi and Kathie Bender, Chicago Regional Coordinators for the Sisterhood, will describe how the Sisters in Chicago have connected in the past couple of years. They will illustrate the need for expanding relationships and will relay, what they think, are the dangers of being exposed to a single version of a group of people, often featured in news stories and popular culture. You will be encouraged to identify and explore your own personal stereotypes and those of the community around you.
NCJW knows that women navigate the world through relationships. We know the value of bringing together Muslim and Jewish women, who share so many practices and beliefs. It is together that we can work together most effectively and put an end to anti-Muslim and anti-Jewish sentiment. Visit to register.

Wednesday, November 18, 7:30 PM
Feeling Gratitude in Difficult Times
Join us for a lively and fun discussion about:
  • For what are we feeling especially grateful this year in particular, during the pandemic?
  • How do we put a Jewish “spin” on Thanksgiving and what is the Jewish perspective on gratitude?
  • What is your favorite Thanksgiving recipe? How do you add a new flavor or dish to your Thanksgiving menu?
Please plan to send one copy of your recipe to by November 8 and we will compile and send to everyone.

Suggested readings

Thursday, November 19, 5:30 pm Central
Staying in the Fight for Racial Justice
Our long-term commitment to showing up in meaningful ways in the work for racial justice must be unwavering. What can and should this look like? And how do our fight for racial justice and our work combating antisemitism intersect? Join us for a conversation with Eric Ward, Executive Director of the Western States Center, and Yavilah McCoy, CEO of Dimensions Educational Consulting to discuss how we show up and stay in this critical work, and to affirm the crucial truth that Black lives matter. Register here.
NCJW Gives Back
NCJW Gives Back is a new Community Service initiative of NCJW Chicago North Shore during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of our ongoing service projects are currently altered or on hold. Instead, NCJW Gives Back’s mission is to collect and donate items needed by Chicago and Suburban residents who are especially impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic. To maintain the health and safety of all of our community service volunteers, these are a NO-TOUCH activities!
NCJW Gives Back Initiative: November
This month’s service theme is Food Insecurity. November is the month to celebrate Thanksgiving. Yet as of now, Covid-19 continues unabated, and unfortunately we have been warned that the coronavirus pandemic will likely get worse this fall and winter. Lack of resources, access, affordable prices, and isolation are all reasons so many people are experiencing food insecurity in these very difficult times. Judaism teaches us that everyone has a responsibility to help those suffering from poverty. We are taught to help by performing tzedakah, a form of social justice in which donors benefit from giving as much or more than the recipients. Our goal is to help the most vulnerable among us.

Agency recipients: The Ark (Chicago), Niles Township Food Pantry (Skokie), Nuestro Center (Highwood). Visit for a list of requested items.

We will be collecting items on November 8, 9, 10 and 11.

We have several collection locations; we hope one will be convenient for you.

To obtain collection and contact information, please go to our website: or email:

We really appreciate any donation, no matter how small. Your generosity will truly make a difference in people’s lives.
Here's what's coming up for NCJW Gives Back in December...
NCJW Gives Back is continuing the Community Service initiative of NCJW Chicago North Shore during the COVID-19 pandemic. The NCJW Gives Back service theme in December will be Children in Need. December is all about holiday giving. But as we all know, this is a particularly challenging time for families who are already in crisis. Many of us are blessed to have our health and the ability to live our lives and provide for our families. This is most certainly not the case for many families. Our goal is to help brighten a child’s holiday this year.

December's collection will include new children’s toys, books, and infant/baby/toddler outerwear. If you’d like to start a project at home, consider knitting scarves, mittens or creating comfort toys.

Please check our website: or email in the next few weeks to obtain collection and contact information for our next initiative.
Rabbis for Repro
NCJW is thrilled to let you know that we have over 900 clergy representing 40 states (plus DC and the Virgin Islands!) who signed the #RabbisforRepro pledge. Our next goal is 1000 signers representing all 50 states. Here are the states we’re missing: Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Iowa, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and West Virginia. If you know clergy and leaders in those states, please spread the word. And if your clergy is missing from the list, contact them and ask them to sign on. Click here for sample language and social media
On October 26, the Senate confirmed Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court in a 52-48 vote. She was immediately sworn in at the White House and began her term as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court the next day — all of this happening one week before the election, and with more than 60 million ballots already cast at the time of her swearing in.

This nomination process was rife with procedural anomalies, ranging from breaking the rules of the Senate Judiciary Committee twice to rushing confirmation so close to an election and against a backdrop of a pandemic that has left over 228,000 people dead without taking proper time to fully examine the nominee’s background and qualifications. NCJW’s 180,000 advocates dissent to the confirmation of Judge Barrett, to the process through which she was confirmed, and to a Senate that refuses to prioritize the American people.

We will honor Justice Ginsburg’s dying wish by continuing to work to advance and protect the rights of women, children, and families and to ensure a fair, independent, and qualified judiciary that will protect the rights of all Americans
Courts Matter
Pending Action on Lower Court Judges
When the Senate resumes in its “lame duck” post-election session on November 9, they will immediately take up pending judicial nominations with a vote on the nomination of James Knepp to the Northern District of Ohio. The Judiciary Committee is expected to hold a hearing on November 18 to consider Thomas Kirsch, the nominee to fill Amy Coney Barrett’s seat on the Seventh Circuit (nominated even before she was confirmed!) and the following district court nominees: Charles Atchley and Katherine Crytzer to the Eastern District TN; Joseph Dawson to District in SC. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) continues his “no vacancy left unfilled” policy, shamefully prioritizing it over COVID relief. Call your senators to tell them that there should be no further action on judicial nominations: 202-224-3121 or find direct contact information here. Instead, they should spend their time working on COVID relief.

Courts Matter to Voting Rights
The Supreme Court has received a steady stream of cases from various states related to the upcoming Election. In a 5-3 decision on October 26, the Court ruled that ballots in Wisconsin that are postmarked by Election Day but arrive after should be thrown out. Justice Kavanaugh cited Bush v. Gore in his decision justifying the ruling. Justices Kavanaugh, Roberts, and Barrett each served on George W. Bush’s legal team in the Florida 2000 recount and worked to ensure that only Republican votes were counted, calling into question the Court’s impartiality on election-related cases. Justice Kavanaugh’s concurring opinion is extremely troubling as it appears to support President Trump’s pronouncements of a potential rigged election by allowing ballots to be counted after the November 3 deadline. 
This week they also decided to let election officials in North Carolina and Pennsylvania accept mail-in ballots received after November 3. In the Pennsylvania case, they refused to hear an appeal brought by Republicans in the state. In North Carolina, they let a lower court decision stand that allowed for a nine-day extension provided by the state board of elections. Justice Barrett did not participate in either decision because she didn’t have time to familiarize herself with the cases. Notably she did not recuse herself as Senate Democrats insisted.

Courts Matter to Reproductive Rights
On October 22, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch filed a supplemental brief with the Supreme Court, once again petitioning the justices to consider the state’s 15-week abortion ban. The case — Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization — began when the Center for Reproductive Rights filed a complaint and requested a temporary restraining order blocking the law banning all abortions after 15 weeks hours after the governor signed it into law on March 19, 2018. Both the US District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the law as unconstitutional, the latter noting that “[i]n an unbroken line dating to Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court's abortion cases have established (and affirmed, and re-affirmed) a woman's right to choose an abortion before viability.” 
Following Mississippi’s initial request that the Supreme Court review these decisions in June 2020, the justices have rescheduled consideration of whether to take up the case three times. Now, the state argues that this case not only presents a direct challenge to Roe but is also an opportunity for the Court to clarify its June 2020 decision in June Medical Services v. Russo. Lower courts are divided on how to interpret this precedent because, rather than joining Justice Breyer’s opinion for the Court, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote a separate concurrence maintaining that 2016’s Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt was wrongfully decided; he also insisted that courts need not balance the supposed benefits of the law with the burdens it imposed on those seeking abortion care and can instead apply a less stringent standard of review. The Court has announced that it will consider Mississippi’s petition during its conference on Friday, October 30, and typically releases orders on the following Monday, meaning that we could learn whether the Court will hear the case this term on November 2.
Get Covered — The Health Care Marketplace is Officially Open!
At NCJW, we believe that every single person’s health is paramount. Ensuring that all have access to the resources necessary to make their own decisions about their health, families, and futures is critical to achieving our goal of reproductive justice. And thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), accessible, high-quality, comprehensive insurance covering a wide range of reproductive health services is now within reach for millions of Americans.

From November 1 to December 15, you can compare and purchase health care plans on the insurance marketplace that will start on January 1, 2021. Because the ACA is still the law of the land, your plan will cover 10 categories of essential health benefits at no cost to you, including:

  • Preventive and wellness services, including annual physicals and life-saving screenings for breast and cervical cancers;
  • Birth control;
  • Mental health services;
  • Pregnancy and newborn care; and
  • Mental health services.

We all have an obligation to care for our health and to help others do the same. Ready to enroll? Head over to and get covered today!
Our Day in Court Virtual Town Hall
Wednesday, November 4, 7:00 pm Central
On November 4, we'll have #OurDayInCourt (#ODIC) when the Supreme Court hears Fulton v. Philadelphia. The outcome of the case could allow private agencies that receive taxpayer-funding in order to provide government services — such as foster care providers, food banks, homeless shelters, and more — to deny services to people who are LGBTQ, Jewish, Muslim, or Mormon. That evening (5pm PT / 8pm ET), NEAT and our Cosponsors will host a Virtual Town Hall where our panel of experts will break down the case, the arguments made at the court, potential outcomes, and what we can do between now and #DecisionDay (#DD). NCJW is a ODIC Virtual Town Hall Co-Sponsor. Click here to register.

Monday, November 9, 6:00pm 
An Evening with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi
Join us for an evening with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be an Antiracist. Dr. Kendi, one of the country’s leading anti-racist voices, bestselling author, National Book Award winner, and historian will discuss his works at this live, moderated, online event. Learn with us as Dr. Kendi asks us to think about what an anti-racist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it. The conversation with Dr. Kendi will be moderated by journalist Natalie Moore, who covers segregation and inequality for Chicago's public radio station, WBEZ. Natalie is the author of The South Side: A Portrait of Chicago and American Segregation, winner of the 2016 Chicago Review of Books award for nonfiction. This live online event will not be recorded. Click here to register in advance to receive a link to the Zoom event.

Tuesday, November 10, at 3:00 pm central
NCJW Post-Election Event
Voter turnout this year is unprecedented, and it is due in part to your efforts! From your education and registration efforts to poll monitoring and election protection to ballot initiatives, NCJW’s work is felt across the United States. To learn more about how the election outcomes will impact NCJW’s work, join us on Facebook Live on Tuesday, November 10.

November 11, 7pm central
Every Voice, Every Vote: What's Next?
As election season and our civic engagement campaign come to an end, The RAC invites you to Every Voice, Every Vote: What's Next?, a Movement-wide convening on November 11 at 8 p.m. ET to lift up stories and celebrate our collective accomplishments, hear from our partners about the impact of this election on the most urgent issues of the moment, and commit to being a part of the ongoing effort to mobilize our Reform Movement to pursue justice and effect change at the local, state, and federal levels in 2021. Click here for information.

Metropolitan Chicago Jewish Population Study 
Every ten years, a study is conducted in the Chicagoland area to learn about the size and characteristics of our Jewish community. The goal of the study is to learn more about the characteristics, attitudes, and needs of community members to inform future programming and planning. NORC at the University of Chicago, in partnership with Brandeis University, is conducting the study, which is sponsored by the Jewish United Fund (JUF).

You may already have received a letter, email, and/or a phone call from NORC at the University of Chicago asking for your participation in this survey. If not, you may receive one in the coming weeks. If you are contacted by phone, the Caller ID will say “NORC U CHICAGO.” Any letter you receive about this will come from NORC at the University of Chicago. Email messages will come from Please check spam folders for invitations you might have missed. 

If you are invited, we encourage you to complete the survey and represent the entire Jewish population of the Chicagoland area. Because this is a scientific survey, only a sample of community members are invited to participate. 

If you have questions about the study, please contact David Rubovits at the Jewish United Fund (
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.

Facebook fundraisers make it easy to encourage your friends and family to support the causes that are important to you.

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