Roundup: June 9, 2023

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Supreme Court strikes down Alabama gerrymandering

The Supreme Court issued a decision Thursday morning upholding the voting rights of Black voters in Alabama in a landmark voting rights case. The Supreme Court upheld the opinion of a lower court, ruling that Alabama must redraw its congressional boundaries to better represent the state’s Black residents.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland celebrated the ruling, “Today’s decision rejects efforts to further erode fundamental voting rights protections, and preserves the principle that in the United States, all eligible voters must be able to exercise their constitutional right to vote free from discrimination based on their race.” This decision may set precedent for congressional maps to be redrawn in Louisiana and South Carolina.

Will Chicago end its ShotSpotter contract?

As the campaign to end the use of ShotSpotter technology here in Chicago and around the country grows, the story of Dayton, Ohio provides some important data and lessons for the Brandon Johnson administration. [via Illinois Answers Project]

In 2019, Dayton installed approximately 60 ShotSpotter gunshot-detection devices surrounding a predominantly Black neighborhood. Three years later, the city found that less than 1% of dispatch alerts resulted in arrests for gun-related crimes. Dayton subsequently decided not to renew its contract.

The results resemble those in Chicago, where the OIG found that ShotSpotter rarely leads to evidence of a gun-related crime, even as it increases police interaction and surveillance of Black, brown, and poor communities.

Mayor Johnson pledged to end the ShotSpotter contract, which is set to expire in February 2024. You can sign on to the #StopShotSpotter open letter here.

Juneteenth Havdalah is next Shabbat, June 17! 

The Kol Or Jews of Color Caucus invites you to our annual Juneteenth Havdalah, taking place Saturday, June 17 at 6:00 pm at KAM Isaiah Israel.

The Juneteenth Havdalah is Kol Or’s biggest event of the year. More than 100 members of the JCUA community and beyond come together to commemorate Juneteenth, observe Shabbat, and celebrate our multi-ethnic, multiracial Jewish community.

This year, our theme is Liberation: Can You Feel It? We will bring that feeling of freedom to our hearts and minds through celebration. Register here.

Join our annual Racial Justice training on July 9

On Sunday, July 9th, JCUA is holding its annual Racial Justice Training. This day-long program, led by a multiracial team of staff and leaders, is designed for white Jews and Jews of Color looking to strengthen their skills to combat racism and white supremacy within themselves, their work with JCUA, and throughout their lives.

This training is open to all JCUA members. Become a member today and sign up to join us on July 9th.

Applications are open for the 2023-2024 Or Tzedek cohort

Are you (or do you know) a passionate, socially engaged young person looking to make a difference in Chicago and Illinois? We invite you to apply for JCUA’s Or Tzedek Organizing Internship for 2023-2024.

Over eight months, high school students ages ages 14-18 learn the history of Jewish activism and resistance, gain critical organizing skills, and take action on active grassroots campaigns in Chicago. Participants become powerful organizers, and many alumni stay part of the JCUA community as leaders within our multigenerational organizing committees.

Don’t miss the incredible opportunity to make a meaningful impact in our community and forge lifelong connections with young Jewish organizers across the region. You can apply here.