Sisterhood Blog

No Women Allowed in the Bomb Shelter

By Debra Nussbaum Cohen

ורד אלמוגי

Amid all the Facebook posts about the heart-rending violence taking place at this moment in Israel and Gaza, this photo of a bomb shelter door in Ashdod leapt out. It says that the bomb shelter is only for men and boys.

We don’t know if there is a separate shelter right next to this one, designated for women and girls. Nevertheless, it is gender segregation at its most outrageous.

It reflects how deeply the notion that men and women must be separated at all costs has taken hold — even in life-threatening situations, such as when the sirens sound the alert that rockets are falling.

There may be a women and girls’ shelter next door. There may not be. My Hebrew isn’t good enough to be able to read all of comments this photo has sparked on Facebook, some of which might shed light on the question, and Bing does a lousy job of translating them.

But even if there is, what if going to the female-only bomb shelter requires women and girls to take a few more steps than if they were allowed in this one? What if that puts them in harms way?

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: sisterhood, israel, haredim, gaza, debra nussbaum cohen, bomb shelter

How to Hire More Female Federation Leaders

By Debra Nussbaum Cohen

Journalist Haviv Rettig Gur recently noted in ejewishphilanthropy.com that just two of the 19 largest Jewish federations in North America are headed by women.

This is worth highlighting, particularly as the Jewish Federation of North America’s General Assembly gets down to business today in Baltimore (it runs through November 13). The presently dismal rate of hiring women at the top of large Jewish federations “paint[s] a picture of an institution out of touch with some of the key trends in today’s Jewish world,” Rettig Gur writes.

The issue in the organized Jewish world is not limited to federations, of course. In the most recent of its annual surveys of compensation in 76 national Jewish organizations, The Forward found “a picture of communal stagnation in gender equality, as the number of women in leadership roles remains at the same low level, and the gap between male and female salaries has grown even larger.”

That there are even two women heading the largest federations is a recent development. San Francisco’s federation appointed the first woman to head one of the “big 19” in 2010, and Montreal’s hired a woman at its helm last year.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: sisterhood, jfna, jewish women, jewish federation of north america, haviv rettig gur, debra nussbaum cohen, women

More Woman-Led Groups Picked for Slingshot Guide

By Debra Nussbaum Cohen

Thinkstock

Women are running a growing number of Jewish organizations, at least those represented in “Slingshot: A Resource Guide to Jewish Innovation.” While about half of the groups selected in recent years for the annual guide of 64 innovative Jewish organizations have been led by women, this year the percentage has shot up to 64%, or nearly two-thirds.

It’s no accident that the groups selected for Slingshot, which tend to be relatively young and small organizations, place a premium on women’s professional leadership, said Rabbi Jill Jacobs, executive director of Rabbis for Human Rights-North America, whose organization is one of those chosen for the guide.

“Slingshot highlights organizations outside the traditional mainstream, working with younger populations or social justice or the arts,” she said. “Mainstream Jewish organizations haven’t been as open to women’s leadership. So women realize we need to create a different kind of community and are creating what we want it to be,” she said.

This is the eighth annual guide put out by Slingshot, a New York-based organization of “next gen” funders, most of whom are in their 20s and 30s. This year, the guide includes 64 organizations — 50 in the main list, plus 14 more-established groups in a category called “standard bearers.” The guide will be published November 5, when a PDF download will be made available. The printed book, delayed by Hurricane Sandy, will be sent out to some 7,500 philanthropists a short time later.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: slingshot guide, sisterhood, non profits, jill jacobs, debra nussbaum cohen, women




Find us on Facebook!
  • Maybe he was trying to give her a "schtickle of fluoride"...
  • It's all fun, fun, fun, until her dad takes the T-Bird away for Shabbos.
  • "Like many Jewish people around the world, I observed Shabbat this weekend. I didn’t light candles or recite Hebrew prayers; I didn’t eat challah or matzoh ball soup or brisket. I spent my Shabbat marching for justice for Eric Garner of Staten Island, Michael Brown of Ferguson, and all victims of police brutality."
  • Happy #NationalDogDay! To celebrate, here's a little something from our archives:
  • A Jewish couple was attacked on Monday night in New York City's Upper East Side. According to police, the attackers flew Palestinian flags.
  • "If the only thing viewers knew about the Jews was what they saw on The Simpsons they — and we — would be well served." What's your favorite Simpsons' moment?
  • "One uncle of mine said, 'I came to America after World War II and I hitchhiked.' And Robin said, 'I waited until there was a 747 and a kosher meal.'" Watch Billy Crystal's moving tribute to Robin Williams at last night's #Emmys:
  • "Americans are much more focused on the long term and on the end goal which is ending the violence, and peace. It’s a matter of zooming out rather than debating the day to day.”
  • "I feel great sorrow about the fact that you decided to return the honor and recognition that you so greatly deserve." Rivka Ben-Pazi, who got Dutchman Henk Zanoli recognized as a "Righteous Gentile," has written him an open letter.
  • Is there a right way to criticize Israel?
  • From The Daily Show to Lizzy Caplan, here's your Who's Jew guide to the 2014 #Emmys. Who are you rooting for?
  • “People at archives like Yad Vashem used to consider genealogists old ladies in tennis shoes. But they have been impressed with our work on indexing documents. Now they are lining up to work with us." This year's Jewish Genealogical Societies conference took place in Utah. We got a behind-the-scenes look:
  • What would Maimonides say about Warby Parker's buy-one, give-one charity model?
  • For 22 years, Seeds of Peace has fostered dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian teens in an idyllic camp. But with Israel at war in Gaza, this summer was different. http://jd.fo/p57AB
  • J.J. Goldberg doesn't usually respond to his critics. But this time, he just had to make an exception.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.