Reform California

100 Reform California Clergy Come Together for the TRUST Act

With the High Holy Days upon us, there is time for reflection, prayer and “teshuvah,” meaning repentance or, more literally, turning and returning.  Returning to our best selves, returning to be fully present with our loved ones, and returning to those in our cities, states, and country to work for a better world.  Reform CA, a campaign of the California Reform Jewish Movement, collectively representing over 36,000 Reform Jews in California, is turning and returning together with a powerful interfaith coalition to heal rifts within California and address the suffering of immigrant families throughout the state.   Reform Jews are organizing to ensure the passage of the TRUST Act, critical statewide immigration legislation which will reverse a culture of fear that is pervasive in California’s immigrant community, restore the trust between immigrants and local law enforcement, and protect victims of domestic abuse as well as witnesses and victims of others crimes.

This week, a letter from over 100 Reform rabbis and cantors in California urging the passage of a just TRUST Act was delivered to Governor Jerry Brown by Rabbi Mona Alfi of Congregation B’nai Israel in Sacramento and Jennifer Kaufman, the Director of the Commission on Social Action on behalf of Reform CA. Reform clergy are standing together to ask for Governor Brown’s partnership in lifting up California as a model of dignity and justice for immigrants across the nation.  As Jews, we, too, have known the experience of being aspiring Americans and seeking full inclusion in America and so we join together with this generation of those seeking a better life for their families.

Rabbi Alfi has been committed to the cause of humane and just immigration reform for as long as she can remember:

“Working for immigrant rights and immigration reform is personal to me. I do this in my father’s memory.  My father and his family were all immigrants.  My siblings and I are the only ones in our generation that were born here, and it is not a blessing I take for granted.  This country has surely given us in the most literal sense, life, liberty, and the ability to pursue happiness.  My father believed in the American dream, and this is my way to work to preserve that dream for others.”

It is in the spirit of our collective and personal experiences that Reform CA feels compelled to speak out in support of the TRUST Act. As of the publishing of this article, Reform CA community members and clergy have together delivered over 360 phone calls to Governor Brown’s office as we act together for justice. Read the full letter to Governor Brown here.

To participate in the Reform Califonia Call-In Day, call 1-866-730-9344 to hear a brief recording of talking points and be connected to Governor Brown’s office. You can also text “TRUSTAct” to 877-877 or fill out this form to receive text instructions to connect. For more information, contact Rabbi Stephanie Kolin at


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Katharine Nasielski

About Katharine Nasielski

Katharine Burd Nasielski is the Communications Associate at the RAC and was an Eisendrath Legislative Assistant from 2011-2012. She graduated in 2011 from Northwestern University and is originally from Philadelphia, PA where she is a member of Society Hill Synagogue.

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