Jewish Disability Awareness,
Acceptance
& Inclusion
Month

 

February 1-28, 2022

 

Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance and Inclusion Month (JDAIM) is a unified effort among Jewish organizations and communities worldwide to raise awareness and foster inclusion of people with disabilities and those who love them. JDAIM is a call to action to each one of us in accordance with our Jewish values, honoring the gifts and strengths that we each possess. Established in 2009 by the Jewish Special Education International Consortium, JDAIM is observed each February.

 

This year is the 14th annual observation of JDAIM. 

Events

Virtual Town Hall Meeting
 

Sunday, Feb. 20, at 1 p.m. via Zoom
 

Join JFS, Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, and RespectAbility for a virtual town hall forum on disability and inclusion in our Jewish Community.

 

This 1.5-hour discussion is open to everyone, and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend.

 

JFS Disability Liaison Amanda Thomas, Ph.D., will join moderators from RespectAbility to lead the webinar.


ASL and CART will be provided. Contact Amanda Thomas at amthomas@jfslv.org with questions.
 

Watch Past Webinars

Watch the video

Supported Decision-Making: A Practical Alternative to Guardianship

Watch the video

Diability Pride vs. Disability Fix

The JDAIM Mission

 

The mission of Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance and Inclusion Month is to unite Jewish communities worldwide to raise awareness and champion the rights of all Jews to be included and to participate in all aspects of Jewish life like anyone else.

Photos from Jewish Federations of North America's 2020 Jewish Disability Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C.

Check below for some practical tips on how and why to observe JDAIM on your own or with your congregation.

WHY YOU SHOULD PARTICIPATE IN JDAIM

Raise awareness of how people with disabilities and mental health conditions have been regarded by Jewish and secular society and how that impacts our own actions.

Underscore the importance of choosing one’s own Jewish journey.

Encourage Jews around the world to become genuinely empathetic and welcoming toward people with disabilities and mental health conditions.

Urge Jews to welcome people with disabilities and mental health conditions into their communities and personal lives.

Include people with disabilities and mental health conditions in all aspects of communal life.

Advocate for the rights of people with disabilities and mental health conditions.

Support people with disabilities and mental health conditions to make their own decisions about how they want to belong to their Jewish community.

6 PRACTICAL WAYS TO RECOGNIZE JDAIM IN YOUR SYNAGOGUE

Announce page numbers often. Describe the prayer book and commentary by color and size, in addition to name. Use a manual scoreboard to show page numbers.

Invite people with disabilities and mental health conditions ahead of time to participate in a service. Honor them by being called to the Torah and help them practice the blessings. Ask people and their family members to offer a d’var Torah, carry the Torah, light Shabbat candles, and lead the Kiddush.

If your bimah is not accessible, move the reading desk to the main level of the sanctuary so the Torah itself is accessible to all.

During this month, engage in conversations about inclusion in Torah study and sermons. Extend the discussion to your board and committee meetings.

Use social media to promote inclusion. Post about your events, quote text that resonates with Jewish values about inclusion. YouTube a short Torah commentary about inclusion.

Provide prayer books and Torah commentaries in accessible format (i.e. Braille, large print, audio versions).