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B’nai B’rith Conventions Demand Representations in Youth Groups

Resolutions calling for youth representation on Jewish community councils, synagogues and other policy making agencies were adopted here today by 350 teenage delegates, attending the B’nai B’rith Youth organization twin conventions.

Youth delegates participating in the 36th annual international convention of Aleph Zadik Aleph–teenage boy’s division of B’nai B’rith youth organization–and B’nai B’rith Girls, girls’ division, expressed concern that adults were legislating decisions affecting youth, while giving youth no opportunity to make its views known.

Delegates to both conventions also went on record as favoring formation of local intergroup youth councils to work for improved relations among groups of differing racial and religious backgrounds. The delegates pledged to spearhead formation of such groups in their home communities. It was pointed out that many are already in existence, particularly in Southern communities, due largely to efforts of local chapters of B’nai B’rith youth organizations.

B’nai B’rith Girl delegates also adopted resolutions: 1. Asking chapters to encourage programs dealing with study of current teenage ethics and morals; 2. Encouraging local chapters to establish nationally coordinated program of Jewish study “to help raise the level of Jewish education among young Jews”; 3. Calling on school systems throughout the country to adopt Hebrew as an accredited, academic language.

One area of major concern to AZA delegates was the level of Jewish education. A resolution criticizing the current quality of Jewish education, as “generally inadequate,” asked those concerned with Jewish education to provide more courses dealing with Jewish history, comparison courses on differences among various denominations of Judaism, and courses on rituals, literature, Israel and current Jewish events.

Both conventions voted to continue their international service funds, which provide support for B’nai B’rith-operated projects, as well as aid to national and local health and welfare agencies.

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