Major Black, Jewish civil rights orgs teaming up for Philly voter outreach

Stickers are placed out for voters at a polling place on Nov. 6, 2018. (Matt Rourke/AP Photo)

Stickers are placed out for voters at a polling place on Nov. 6, 2018. (Matt Rourke/AP Photo)

A major Black civil rights organization is teaming up with a major Jewish civil rights group to engage in voter outreach and education in Philadelphia.

The National Urban League (NUL) and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) announced the partnership Monday.

“This is about, how do we engage the next generation in the Jewish American and the African American communities,” said ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. “[To] facilitate and enable deeper, closer connections around the issues we both care about.”

The groups did not share much detail about how the partnership will play out in practice, but said they plan to focus on things like registering voters and encouraging young people to become poll workers ahead of the presidential election in November. The partnership will be led by the ADL and NUL’s Philadelphia chapters.

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“Today we unite,” said Marc Morial, President and Chief Executive Officer of the NUL. “We cannot be the generation that stands for the rise of intolerance, the rise of hate, the normalization of racism and anti-Semitism in American life.”

The announcement comes at a tense time for many in Philadelphia’s Black and Jewish communities.

In July, the city’s NAACP President Rodney Muhammad shared a meme that depicted an anti-Semitic cartoon on his personal Facebook page. After declining to apologize for the incident for about a month, national NAACP leaders last week took over the Philadelphia chapter, effectively forcing Muhammed out of the position, and said it would appoint an administrator to oversee the transition to new leadership.

ADL Regional Director Shira Goodman said the partnership between her group and the NUL had been in the works since before the controversy.

Which way will Pa. vote?

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