LGBT outreach at the G.A.


Don’t worry, I found dinner last night. Then I swung by the “LGBT Welcoming Communities Reception.” About 50 people showed up for an open bar and some kosher desserts (pies, cookies, etc.). I’m told that this is the first such event at a G.A. [CORRECTION: OK, OK, not the first time.] My first thought was: If you’re celebrating all of this diversity, why is this reception being held in a room that was about a dozen turns and hallways from the main hall? But one of the speakers at the LGBT event – Idit Klein of Keshet – gave a speech at Monday morning’s main plenary.

So much for that conspiracy theory.

The LGBT event opened with a few remarks from Susie Gelman, a top lay leader at the Jewish federation in D.C., and the self-described proud mom of an openly gay son who recently moved to Tel Aviv. She described the Israeli city as a benchmark for tolerance; Jerusalem, she added, not so much.

In addition to Klein, brief presentations were made by Andrea Fram Plotkin, associate director of the UJC Jewish Peolpehood and Identity pillar, and Gregg Drinkwater, executive director of Jewish Mosaic: The National Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity.

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