Over the past few years, I had been trying to pass a teshuvah (Jewish legal opinion) in the Conservative Movement’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards arguing that Jewish law insists we must not patronize businesses that abuse their workers. The paper specifically focused on hotels, but it is designed to be applicable to other types of businesses.
Hit the jump below to read the paper.
Linked below is the final revised draft, which was voted down by the CJLS last week. For what it’s worth, my original version was much more stringent and, I believe, more in line with what Jewish law actually requires, but over the past 3 years, I softened my position a bit, responding to constructive and sensitive criticism of some CJLS members. I stand behind the conclusions in this draft, though I still think the Jewish legal tradition is actually much more demanding of Jewish consumers.
The bottom line: Jewish law requires us to be socially responsible consumers, and Conservative Judaism uniquely invites us to utilize traditional religious legal concepts to address the serious moral issues of today.
Hit the jump below and decide for yourself. I’m also happy to share previous drafts of the teshuvah. If you’re interested, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.