Labor and Faith Leaders Rally in Support of Immigrants

In an August 21 article by Elizabeth Eisenstadt Evans  in the National Catholic Reporter on a faith and labor-organized rally in support of immigrants, Rabbi Mordecai Liebling, director of RRC’s social justice organizing program, is featured and extensively quoted.

The full article is available here.  Excerpts from the piece:

In a show of unity and peaceful resistance under a steamy August sun, approximately 2,000 union members gathered to protest Trump administration immigration policies, making common cause on an issue that sometimes has divided them.

Sharing the stage Aug. 15 with union leaders and members of the broader faith community, Catholic clergy were prominent, a reminder of the church’s longstanding advocacy for worker’s rights as well as the bishop’s outspoken commitment to immigrant reform.

Rabbi Mordechai Liebling, who direct the social justice organizing program at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Wyncote, Pennsylvania, gave the final blessing at the interfaith service in front of the local ICE office following the march.

The clergy who participated in the rally and the subsequent service had deep ties to the labor movement, he said.

“It’s pretty clear, from a theological perspective, that the Abrahamic religions believe in the dignity of workers,” said Liebling.

In the Jewish tradition, the Talmud (the oral and written source of Jewish law) offers evidence that workers banded together to act and demand a fair wage for their labor, he said. Hebrew scriptures also underline the dignity of work and the importance of a fair wage.

The rally garnered support from a diverse assortment of private and public sector unions.

Liebling said he was encouraged that so many unions decided to participate. “Some of them are not as supportive of immigrants and the undocumented. To have this kind of a coalition is a strong statement, maybe the strongest statement in a long time in support of immigrants.”

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