The Jewish Community Council of Victoria has launched their 2012 appeal with an enticing email:
The pitch begins:
THE JCCV WHO?
We’re often asked what we do, how we support the Jewish community and build social cohesion within the wider multicultural community. Given the JCCV 2012 Appeal, it is timely to address these questions.
A good starting point is to define the role of a peak body – a representative organisation that provides information dissemination services, membership support, coordination, advocacy and representation, and research and policy development services for members and other interested parties…
and wraps up with:
So to our original question – the JCCV who? We speak on behalf of our community and are recognised as the body to turn to for issues regarding the Jewish and broader communities. There is so much more that we would like to do if we were better resourced and we need your support to remain relevant, viable and effective. , and to increase our efforts on the community’s behalf, we need our community’s support and your understanding.
Just before you whip out your credit card and fork out your hard-earned, take a moment to ponder the integrity of the message you’re being fed and question whether you’re donating your money to an honest, ethical organisation.
The JCCV appear to be taking some creative license here in having you believe they speak on behalf of the entire Jewish community. It is clear that they don’t represent the best interests of gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer or same-sex attracted Jews whilst they stand by the following claim:
The reference group recognised that Jewish Halacha prohibits gay sexual behaviour and, according to orthodox rabbinic interpretation, lesbian sexual behaviour.
So whilst the JCCV would want you to believe it represents the entire Jewish community in Victoria, in reality it only represents those people who are heterosexual, those who are pretending to be heterosexual, or those who are openly same-sex attracted and celibate. Some honesty in their marketing would be a start (followed by some integrity in their leadership).
I should add that this over-zealous desire to infer representation of an entire community of Jews is not constrained to Victoria, as has recently been evidenced in New South Wales, where their orthodox rabbinical council inaccurately claimed representation over all “mainstream” Jews in that state.
If you’re looking to donate money to a worthwhile organisation that is genuinely interested in the welfare of all people in the community, and not just those that meet with certain narrow religious expectations, ask some questions first. Find out if the organisation you plan to fund is accepting and inclusive of all people, without regard to their sexual orientation or gender identity, and if they welcome and recognise those people, along with their partner and any children, unhesitatingly.