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Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations Applauds Congress’s Passage of Bipartisan Legislation to Strengthen State Department’s Work to Combat anti-Semitism

Posted on December 31, 2020 In Blog, Press Releases

Today, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America (Orthodox Union)—the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization—applauded the U.S. House’s passage of a bill that elevates the office of Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism to the rank of ambassador and increases the office’s resources.

The Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act (H.R. 221) was approved by unanimous consent in the House Thursday morning, just weeks after the U.S. Senate passed its version of the bill, S.238.

The bipartisan legislation will elevate the State Department Envoy to Combat Anti-Semitism to the rank of Ambassador and provide that office with greater resources to do its work combating anti-Semitism worldwide.

The legislative effort was led in the House by Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), as well as Bradley Schneider (D-Ill.), Peter King (R-N.Y.), Marc Veasey (D-Texas), Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.), Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) and Kay Granger (R-Texas). The Senate bill was led by U.S. Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Bob Menéndez (D-N.J.), Cary Gardner (R-Colo.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).

Nathan Diament, Executive Director for Public Policy for the Orthodox Union, stated:
“The Jewish community is very grateful for Congress’s passage of this important legislation. Sadly, we have seen a surge of anti-Semitic incense around the world in recent years. With the passage of this legislation, the Senate is providing powerful new tools to the State Department to lead impactful international efforts to combat what has been aptly called ‘the world’s oldest form of hatred’ and roll back the tide of anti-Jewish hate.”

Mark (“Moishe”) Bane, President of the Orthodox Union, stated:
“We are very grateful to Representatives Engel and Smith and Senators Rosen and Rubio and the other legislators who shepherded this bill to passage.  We thank Speaker of the House Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy for enabling it to pass in the waning days of the House’s session.  We pray that these new resources will enable the United States to lead efforts to bring greater security to Jews around the world.”