Reform Judaism umbrella passes transgender rights measure

The transgender flag. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

( The umbrella body of Reform Judaism in the U.S. passed a resolution to recognize the rights of transgender individuals on Thursday.

The Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) voted on the “Resolution on the Rights of Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming People” at its biennial conference in Orlando, Fla..

URJ’s Commission on Social Action prepared the resolution, which was passed without opposition, affirming Reform Judaism’s commitment to “full equality, inclusion and acceptance of people of all gender identities and gender expressions.”

Reform congregations, clergy, congregants, and other affiliate institutions will now be asked to refer to transgender people by the name and gender of their choosing, include gender-neutral bathrooms, and use gender-neutral labels. 

They will also be called upon to create programming and materials that “will empower such institutions to be more inclusive and welcoming of people of all gender identities and expressions,” reported the Forward.

After the resolution's passing, nearly 5,000 attendees of the conference stood up and applauded, which was lauded by Stephen Sacks, the chairman of URJ's board.

"Your reaction in this room shows what this movement is about. It makes me very proud," he said, according to the Associated Press.

Other religious movements that have affirmed similar resolutions include the Episcopal Church, the United Church of Christ, the Unitarian Universalist Association, and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association.


Posted on November 5, 2015 .