Aleph Melbourne launches 2020 Local Council Election Voters Guide

Aleph Melbourne launches its 2020 Local Council Elections Voters Guide

MEDIA RELEASE
5 OCTOBER 2020

ALEPH MELBOURNE LAUNCHES 2020 LOCAL COUNCIL ELECTION VOTERS GUIDE

Aleph Melbourne is proud to announce its 2020 Local Council Elections Voters Guide.  The Voters Guide is designed to inform voters living in councils with high Jewish populations how to best identify candidates for the 2020 Local Council Elections who have pledged to support and promote the efforts of local governments to foster a culture that is inclusive, responsive and accessible to LGBTIQA+ Victorians.

Links to the Aleph Melbourne 2020 Local Council Elections Voters Guide:

The Voters Guide is primarily based on the Victorian Pride Lobby‘s Rainbow Votes site which calls on candidates to campaign for and support:

  • Rainbow Tick accreditation for council-run services.
  • the establishment or continuation of an LGBTIQA+ advisory committee to council.
  • the development and implementation of a LGBTIQA+ action plan for council.
  • flying the rainbow flag from council buildings on LGBTIQA+ awareness days.
  • marching in Pride March or participating in Midsumma or local pride events.

Our guide contains the names of those candidates who have responded to the Rainbow Votes pledge in full, in part, or as a refusal. The guide will be reviewed and updated periodically.

We encourage voters to locate their voting ward, review their candidates’ levels of support for LGBTIQ issues and vote in a manner that prioritises LGBTIQ equality.

We also encourage voters to contact candidates directly if they require additional information not included in the Voters Guide.

The Aleph Melbourne 2020 Local Council Elections Voters Guide follows on from our 2013 Voters Guide to Marriage Equality in Jewish Melbourne, 2016 Voters Guide to Marriage Equality in Jewish Melbourne, 2018 Victorian State Election Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality and 2019 Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality.

ENDS

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
Michael Barnett
0417-595-541
contact@aleph.org.au

MR: Aleph Melbourne commends Caulfield Hebrew Congregation on significant LGBTIQ+ diversity reform

MEDIA RELEASE
Aleph Melbourne commends Caulfield Hebrew Congregation on significant LGBTIQ+ diversity reform
July 12 2020

Aleph Melbourne commends the board of Caulfield Hebrew Congregation (CHC) for taking an unequivocal stance against all intolerance of LGBTIQ+ people, and accepts a sincere apology from the board for recent comments made on social media by a CHC Vice President.*

By committing to undertake diversity training, and by accepting that intolerance and vilification directed at LGBTIQ+ people is unacceptable, the CHC board sends a strong message to trans and gender diverse, same-sex attracted, and intersex people in the Jewish community that they are valued, important and worthy.

We acknowledge CHC Rabbi Ralph Genende for his decade-plus leadership in being a proponent for the acceptance of LGBTIQ+ people.

Now with Caulfield Hebrew Congregation sending a clear message that Orthodox Judaism can embrace LGBTIQ+ diversity, Aleph Melbourne calls on all Orthodox synagogues in Melbourne and across Australia to stand in solidarity on this important stance.

* https://aleph.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/20200712-Caulfield-Hebrew-Congregation-Apology-from-President-David-Mond.pdf

MEDIA CONTACT
Michael Barnett (pronouns: he/him/his)
contact@aleph.org.au
0417-595-541

ENDS

20200712-Caulfield-Hebrew-Congregation-Apology-from-President-David-Mond

Response to attack on Cranbourne Golf Club

MEDIA RELEASE
May 21 2020

Response to attack on Cranbourne Golf Club

Aleph Melbourne is disturbed by the news of a pointless and senseless act of cowardly vandalism at Melbourne’s Cranbourne Golf Club.

The antisemitic and homophobic graffiti demonstrates profound immaturity and insensitivity by the perperator/s.

As a support group for LGBTIQ+ Jews we feel the pain doubly. We are targeted for being Jewish. We are targeted for our sexual orientation.

What makes this type of vandalism especially pernicious is that it was laced with hate. It wasn’t an ordinary case of self-expression on a fence or wall, but rather, a calculated and targeted act of intolerance designed to hurt people.

We hope that the perpetrator/s are brought to justice. More than that, we hope that they come to understand the nature of their crime and make amends for their actions.

END


MEDIA CONTACT
Michael Barnett (pronouns: he/him/his)
Co-convenor – Aleph Melbourne
0417-595-541
contact@aleph.org.au

SOURCE
https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/golf-club-vandals-spray-swastikas-on-fourth-green-in-chilling-attack-20200521-p54v5t.html

"Jews of Pride" huge success at 25th Pride March

MEDIA RELEASE
FEBRUARY 3 2020
“Jews of Pride” huge success at 25th Pride March

Jews of Pride at 2020 Pride March
Jews of Pride at 2020 Pride March

Returning for the third year in a row, the award-winning Jews of Pride contingent brought song, dance and festivity to the streets of St Kilda, as part of the 25th annual Pride March, on Sunday February 2 2020.

Fielding it’s largest contingent ever, over 140 people came together representing ten organisations from the Jewish community proudly made their way along Fitzroy Street, to the tunes of traditional and Israeli music pumping from a brightly decorated sound truck, in support of LGBTIQ+ people and families.

Lead organisers Colin Krycer and Michael Barnett, having spent months planning the contingent, were overjoyed that a greater breadth of organisations from the Jewish community joined participated. First time attendees included the National Council of Jewish Women VIC headed up by President Miriam Bass, Zionist Federation of Australia headed up by CEO Ginette Searle, and Australian Jewish Democratic Society headed up by David Zyngier.

Contingent stalwarts included SKIF, Habonim Dror, Temple Beth Israel, Jewish Lesbian Group of Victoria, Aleph Melbourne and Keshet Australia.

Jewish Care, returning for their second year, added two brightly decorated minibuses to the contingent, allowing an inclusive opportunity for those who could not walk along the parade route.

The weather was magnificent, breaking the trend of searingly hot days in recent years, and escaping flooding downpours the day prior, with blue skies and warmth adding to the joy of the event. Onlookers were thrilled with the Jews of Pride, many offering Mazal Tovs and L’chaims.

Although there has been a strong Jewish presence in Pride March for all of its 25 year history, this year’s Jews of Pride contingent saw more community leaders, community organisations, families and supporters standing up for the inclusion, celebration, acceptance, visibility and respect of same-sex attracted, trans and gender diverse, and intersex people, and rainbow families.

Jews of Pride will return in 2021, bigger, better and more beautifully Jewish.

Further comment available:
Michael Barnett
michael@aleph.org.au
0417-595-541
Pronouns: he/him/his
Colin Krycer
colin@aleph.org.au
0411-441-691
Pronouns: he/him/his

PHOTO GALLERY (31 high-res photos)
Credit to Michael Barnett
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/dymdzf4io5idjpc/AACxWXf751__wk74PIZhKIwha?dl=0
Note: photos will be available for a limited time

END

Media Release: Jews of Pride returns to Pride March in 2020

MEDIA RELEASE
SUNDAY JANUARY 12 2020
JEWS OF PRIDE RETURNS TO PRIDE MARCH IN 2020

The biggest ever Jews of Pride contingent will come together on Sunday February 2 at the 2020 Midsumma Pride March in Melbourne.

Over ten supportive groups from the Melbourne Jewish community will comprise Jews of Pride as we proudly stand up for and celebrate equality for all LGBTIQ+ people.

In 2018 Jews of Pride was awarded the “Most Fabulous” group in Pride March: https://aleph.org.au/2018/02/18/jewish-contingent-awarded-most-fabulous-in-2018-midsumma-pride-march

Last year the collective energy of 100 people created an unsurpassed Jewish presence in Pride March: https://aleph.org.au/2019/02/06/jews-of-pride-at-midsumma-pride-march-2019

This year, after months of planning, Jews of Pride returns with renewed enthusiasm, a fantastic fresh look, a bigger sound system and refreshed playlist, and our largest ever number of groups from the Jewish community. Participating organisations include:

  • Aleph Melbourne
  • Australian Jewish Democratic Society
  • Habonim Dror
  • Jewish Care Victoria
  • Jewish Lesbian Group of Victoria
  • Keshet
  • National Council of Jewish Women of Australia (Vic)
  • SKIF
  • Temple Beth Israel
  • Zionist Federation of Australia
  • and more!

We invite the entire Jewish community to join Jews of Pride and celebrate Jewish trans and gender diverse, intersex, same-sex attracted people, rainbow families and allies, in the most fabulous, dynamic and festive contingent, as we pump out upbeat music and dance our way along Fitzroy Street.

Be part of the fun and meet us at the marshalling area, corner of Lakeside Drive and Fitzroy Street between 10 and 10:30 am for the 11am march start. Jews of Pride is in Wave G, position 16.

Jews of Pride Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1361418940707508
March order: https://www.midsumma.org.au/info/midsumma-pride-march-2020-marching-order

Enquiries: Michael Barnett | michael@aleph.org.au | 0417-595-541

MEDIA RELEASE: Aleph Melbourne acknowledges Victorian birth certificate reforms

MEDIA RELEASE
Aleph Melbourne acknowledges Victorian birth certificate reforms
August 28 2019

On August 27 2019 the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Amendment Bill
2019 (VIC)
passed in the Victorian State Parliament.

In essence this legislative reform will allow transgender and gender diverse Victorians to change the gender marker on their birth certificate without having to undergo sex reassignment surgery.

This simple reform will make a huge difference to the lives of those people who are currently unable to easily align their birth certificate with their affirmed gender.

The Jewish community, along with other communities across the state, will benefit from this reform, as its trans and gender diverse people can start living fuller, more meaningful lives, participating in activities that other people take for granted.

Aleph Melbourne commends these reforms, but also notes they are substandard to the recent Tasmanian reforms that made gender optional on birth certificates.

More information: Ygender: Birth Certificate Reform 2019

Aleph Melbourne Contact: Michael Barnett / michael@aleph.org.au / 0417-595-541

About Aleph Melbourne: Aleph Melbourne is a social, support and advocacy group for same-sex attracted, trans and gender diverse, and intersex people (and allies) who have a Jewish heritage, living in Melbourne, Australia.

Media:

Aleph Melbourne launches 2019 Federal Election Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality

Aleph Melbourne launches its 2019 Federal Election Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality

MEDIA RELEASE
14 MAY 2019

ALEPH MELBOURNE LAUNCHES 2019 FEDERAL ELECTION VOTERS GUIDE FOR LGBTIQ EQUALITY

Aleph Melbourne is proud to announce its 2019 Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality.  The Voters Guide is designed to assist voters living in Victorian voting divisions with high Jewish populations best select candidates who have comprehensively demonstrated or pledged support for LGBTIQ equality.

The 2019 Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality is online at https://aleph.org.au/2019votersguide

Based on the Equality Australia’s Rainbow Votes 2019 – Party Surveys, we categorise the issues as Voice in Government Policy Making, Social inclusion, Protection at work, Religious exemptions, Conversion Therapy, Reformation of sports exemptions, Access to Medicare for gender affirmation treatment, Refugees, Government funded services, Protection for rainbow families, and Support in schools.

We encourage voters to locate their voting district, review their candidates’ levels of support for LGBTIQ issues and vote in a manner that prioritises LGBTIQ equality.

We also encourage voters to contact candidates directly if they require additional information not included in the Voters Guide.

The 2019 Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality follows on from our 2013 Voters Guide to Marriage Equality in Jewish Melbourne, 2016 Voters Guide to Marriage Equality in Jewish Melbourne and 2018 Victorian State Election Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality.

ENDS

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
Michael Barnett
0417-595-541
contact@aleph.org.au

MEDIA RELEASE: Aleph Melbourne receives historic 20 year apology from Jewish Community Council of Victoria

On April 1 2019 the Jewish Community Council of Victoria delivered an historic 20-year apology to Aleph Melbourne for past injustices.

MEDIA RELEASE
Aleph Melbourne receives historic 20 year apology
from Jewish Community Council of Victoria
April 2 2019

Last night the Jewish Community Council of Victoria issued an unconditional apology to Aleph Melbourne for denying it membership of their council in May 1999, and for hurt arising out of the debate that transpired.

Aleph Melbourne welcomes the apology and thanks the JCCV Executive and those members of their council who turned up to vote in favour of the motion.

Whilst the JCCV Executive has always been supportive of Aleph Melbourne, the words of the apology and their actions have demonstrated they are committed to supporting the full and unconditional inclusion and acceptance of all same-sex attracted, trans and gender diverse, and intersex people in the Jewish community.

It was significant that this apology was issued alongside a discussion on anti-Semitism and racism.  The JCCV have further demonstrated their integrity by acknowledging that hate from within the Jewish community is as unacceptable as hate directed toward it.

Aleph Melbourne acknowledges the involvement of the Australian Jewish Democratic Society in the formulation and passage of this apology and is grateful for their long-standing and ongoing support.

Aleph Melbourne believes this is the first apology ever from any Jewish community in relation to the mistreatment of LGBTIQ people.

The JCCV apology is attached below.

A photograph of the formal presentation of a framed copy of the apology is available below and online here: http://bit.ly/jccv-aleph-apology-photo; L to R: (JCCV reps) Anton Hermann, Doron Abramovici, Jennifer Huppert; (Aleph Melbourne reps) Michael Barnett, Shaun Miller, Colin Krycer.  Photo by Gregory Storer.

Michael Barnett & Shaun Miller
ALEPH MELBOURNE

ENDS

For further information contact Michael Barnett  on 0417-595-541 or michael@aleph.org.au


 

Motion to JCCV Plenum – April 2019

To acknowledge the 20-year anniversary of Aleph Melbourne being denied membership of the Jewish Community Council of Victoria

On the occasion of 20 years since the failed attempt by Aleph Melbourne to join the JCCV, this plenum places on record that:

  • Aleph Melbourne submitted a valid application for membership of the JCCV in January 1999
  • The Executive of the JCCV supported admission of Aleph Melbourne as a member
  • On 10 May 1999 the JCCV Plenum debated the motion and voted (39 votes in favour and 46 votes against) to deny the application for membership
  • In the course of the debate, homophobic views were expressed by some delegates which caused long-term harm to members of our LGBTIQ+ community

Accordingly, this Plenum now apologises unconditionally to all members of our community who were impacted by the rejection of the membership application and for the unacceptable homophobic views expressed during the debate.

We apologise for the deep offence and humiliation caused by the hateful words spoken in the course of the debate.

We apologise for the subsequent distress, further marginalisation and stigmatisation caused by the rejection of Aleph Melbourne’s membership application.

We now recommit ourselves to welcoming and embracing LGBTIQ+ Jews in all our work, as part of our broader commitment to social inclusion for all members of the Jewish community of Victoria.

Through our genuine commitment to equality and diversity we seek to ensure that the mistakes of the past will not be repeated.


 

20190401 JCCV present historic apology to Aleph Melbourne
L to R: (JCCV reps) Anton Hermann, Doron Abramovici, Jennifer Huppert; (Aleph Melbourne reps) Michael Barnett, Shaun Miller, Colin Krycer.  Photo by Gregory Storer.

Aleph Melbourne launches 2018 Victorian State Election Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality

Aleph Melbourne launches its 2018 Victorian State Election Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality

MEDIA RELEASE
18 NOVEMBER 2018

ALEPH MELBOURNE LAUNCHES 2018 VICTORIAN STATE ELECTION VOTERS GUIDE FOR LGBTIQ EQUALITY

Aleph Melbourne is proud to announce its 2018 Voters Guide for LGBTIQ Equality.  The Voters Guide is designed to assist voters living in Victorian voting districts with high Jewish populations best select candidates who have comprehensively demonstrated or pledged support for LGBTIQ equality.

The Voters Guide is online here: https://aleph.org.au/vic2018

Based on the Victorian Gay and Lesbian Lobby’s Rainbow Votes Survey and Report Card, we categorise the issues as Advancing equality, Discrimination, Safety and security, Family violence, housing and homelessness, Relationships, families and children, Education, Health and wellbeing, Bisexual Victorians, Trans and gender diverse Victorians, and Intersex Victorians.

We encourage voters to locate their voting district, review their candidates’ levels of support for LGBTIQ issues and vote in a manner that prioritises LGBTIQ equality.

We also encourage voters to contact candidates directly if they require additional information not included in the Voters Guide.

The 2018 Voters Guide is our first for a state election and follows on from our 2013 Voters Guide and 2016 Voters Guides for the respective Federal Elections.

ENDS

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
Michael Barnett
0417-595-541
contact@aleph.org.au

 

Media Release: Aleph Melbourne welcomes Mount Scopus Inclusivity Statement

ALEPH MELBOURNE
MEDIA RELEASE
JULY 22 2016

Aleph Melbourne welcomes the “Inclusivity Statement”[1] issued to parents by Mount Scopus Memorial College on June 20 2016.

This statement is the first public acknowledgement by the school for the need to offer specific support to same-sex attracted and gender diverse students, as well as students from rainbow families.

Whilst the school has not yet adopted a comprehensive program such as that offered by the Safe Schools Coalition Australia[2] (SSCA), this is an important first step, as it offers a foundation for the school to build on.

Increasingly, the Australian school landscape is understanding that the era of marginalising same-sex attracted, intersex, and gender diverse students is over and is seeking better ways to include and value the diversity of these students.

Strong leadership has already been demonstrated in the Victorian Jewish school community, with The King David School, Sholem Aleichem College and Bialik College being long-standing members of SSCA.

As Mount Scopus finds its feet in supporting their previously neglected students, it will discover a fantastic surge in performance from those students it enables to be authentic to themselves.  The more support these students receive, whether at school, at home or in the community, the more they will thrive.

Aleph Melbourne looks forward to further initiatives from Mount Scopus Memorial College that actively demonstrate support for their LGBTIQ students and wishes the school a hearty congratulations for taking this first brave step.

Media contact: Michael Barnett – 0417-595-541

[1] http://aleph.org.au/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/2016_07_20_-_Mount_Scopus_Inclusivity_Statement_Letter.pdf[2] http://www.safeschoolscoalition.org.au