The Jewish Council on Urban Affairs is working to transform Chicago into a city free of poverty, racism and antisemitism, by mobilizing the Jewish community to be a powerful voice for economic and racial justice. For 55 years, we have worked in partnership with diverse coalitions and directly impacted communities to address the root causes of disparity and advocate for concrete improvements in people’s lives. With a growing membership of nearly 2,000 Jews across Chicagoland, we bring a committed base to three main program areas: issue-based campaigns, youth engagement and community investment. JCUA is the only Jewish organization based in Chicago using a community organizing model to advance systemic change on domestic issues with a local focus.
We hope you join us.

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JCUA is currently active on three major issue campaigns:

police accountability

We’re pushing for civilian oversight and accountability measures for the Chicago Police Department. We’re active in the coalitions to pass the Grassroots Alliance for Police Accountability (GAPA) ordinance and the recommendations from the Coalition for Police Contracts Accountability (CPCA).

immigration justice

We’re standing with immigrants who face dire threats from the federal administration by supporting policies that make Chicago a welcoming place for everyone. We’re active in the coalition working to remove the carve-outs in the Welcoming City Ordinance and working to end the use of the city’s Gang Database.

Progressive tax POLICY

Over the next year, we’re working to ensure that the Fair Tax 2020 referendum for Illinois passes on Election Day, which will create a graduated state income tax and generate much-needed revenue for public goods and services.

Upcoming Events

Chicago Justice Series Session 2 @ Silverstein Base Hillel
Feb 19 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Interested in learning more about economic justice and the Fair Tax campaign? Join Silverstein Base Hillel, Mishkan Chicago, JCUA, Avodah, and Repair the World for our 4th annual Justice Series cohort. The cohort will meet every other week from 7-9pm on Wednesdays from February 5-April 3 (Feb 5, 19, March 4, March 18, April 3), concluding with a Shabbat dinner on Friday night. Registration for the series costs $25 per person, but please reach out if cost is a barrier. Sign up here!

JCUA Immigration Committee @ SketchPad
Feb 20 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

Join us on Thursday, February 20 at 6:30 pm at SketchPad (4700 N. Ravenswood Ave.) for our ~monthly Immigration Committee meeting. We will have an orientation for first-time attendees at 6:10 pm.

JCUA Organizing Fellowship Workshop
Feb 23 @ 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm

This is a regular meeting of the JCUA Organizing Fellowship yearly cohort for college-aged young folks. Please visit to learn more about the program.

Fair Tax Committee Meeting and Train the Trainer Workshop @ Sketchpad
Feb 27 @ 6:15 pm – 8:00 pm

Want to facilitate a Fair Tax presentation this spring or summer? Come to learn how to present the material and get an opportunity to practice with other committee members. You can RSVP here.

Recent Posts

  • January 3, 2020 05/29/15 “I feel like it reaches the core of my being.”

    Curious about what it's like to be a JCUA member? According to one of our core members Mike Frankenstein, it's pretty special. "The people I work with energize me and excite me and help me feel my Jewish responsibility. It is unique. I feel like it …

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  • October 29, 2019 05/29/15 Our Solidarity Will Defeat White Nationalism

    On October 27, 2018, a white nationalist gunman stormed into a Pittsburgh synagogue during Saturday morning prayers and murdered 11 Jews, in what was the deadliest antisemitic attack in our nation’s history. In the year since, the threat of white nationalism has only gotten more …

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