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The Social Action Committee is actively seeking congregants to participate in newly formed anti-racism working groups. Please email the committee to get involved!




"Justice, justice shall you pursue." —Deuteronomy 16:20

It is not your responsibility to finish the work of perfecting the world, but you are not free to desist from it either. —Rabbi Tarfon, Pirke Avot 2:21

Grounded in Jewish texts and rooted in Jewish values, Temple Sinai works to fulfill the value of tikkun olam—repairing the world. Through education, community partnerships, advocacy, and action, we respond to inequities and injustices in Rochester, the nation and the world.

Our large and vibrant Social Action Committee consists of a variety of working groups. We partner with a number of local organizations to lend our hands to the collective work of building a more just community and region.

For Social Action-sponsored events, check the calendar or the homepage weekly. To learn more or to join in, email Abby Urban-Rifkin.


Check out what is happening through the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism HERE.

Our commitment to help end structural racism

In 2020, Temple Sinai's Social Action Committee pledged to make anti-racism the primary focus of its work. Racism is embedded in the structure of American society. Therefore, we've committed to addressing the intersection with racism as part of all of our work with our partner organizations.  


Issue advocacy

We maintain information about social justice initiatives and legislative advocacy of interest to many of our congregants. Note that inclusion on the list does not imply official endorsement by Temple Sinai. Find out more.


We work with many local organizations to help advance their social justice initiatives. To find out more about our work with any of these organizations, please email the Social Action Committee and put the name of the contact person in the subject line. We are also active in these areas, working in multiple capacities:

  • Immigrant rights / support (Contact: Sandra Mitzner)
  • Combatting anti-semitism (Contact: Abby Urban-Rifkin)
  • LGBT / Pride Parade (Contact: Joyce Schachter)

Contact: Sue Bondy


Contact: Jackie Ebner


Contact: Larry Marx


Contact: Sally Constine


Contact: Marilyn Rosen


Contact: Judy Schwartz


Contact: Ron Newman


Contact: Carol Yunker


Contact: Richard Rosen

 Anti-racism initiatives

Since the May 2020 killing of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers—followed by the public revelation in August that a visitor to Rochester, Daniel Prude, had been killed by asphyxiation by Rochester city police officers—we have gone beyond a commitment to racial equality, joining the emerging movement for anti-racism. 

The Social Action Committee has spearheaded:

  • Listening circles, including one for the Board of Trustees, that encourage participants to explore and confront their own biases
  • Book and film discussions on select works to increase awareness of the history of Black freedom movements and the struggles that endure today
  • An anti-racist curriculum for the students and teachers in our School of Jewish Life & Learning

We're now continuing these efforts through working groups. Email Social Action to find out more and get involved:

  • Anti-Racism Education
  • Health Disparities as Racism
  • "Speaking of Race" Listening Circles to explore and confront individual biases


Sun, July 25 2021 16 Av 5781