Njcrac Warns Economic Woes Could Increase Anti-semitism

Jewish community relations agencies, warning that a continuing rise in unemployment could “accentuate polarization and hostility between groups,” yesterday called for a federal budget in which “human needs” take priority over concerns about the size of the budget deficit.

A policy statement adopted at the annual meeting of the National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council, critical of both the Administration for its vetoes of “vital social measures” and Congress for its “piecemeal approach,” urged an increase of one million public service jobs, accelerated public works, comprehensive national health insurance, expansions in work-study programs and other measures to combat unemployment, housing shortages, health-care needs and other social ills.

The 450 delegates, representing the nine national organizations and 98 local councils that comprise NJCRAC, also elected Lewis D. Cole of Louisville to a third one-year term as chairman. The Jewish Community Council of El Paso, Texas, was elected to membership in the coordinating agency.

The NJCRAC policy statement contended that the nation “can afford a larger budget deficit to win the war against economic recession, social disruption and human misery.” It added; “Beyond our concern for justice and equity is the fact that competition for scarcities accentuates polarization and hostility between groups, increasing susceptibility to demagoguery, scapegoating and anti-Semitism.”

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