10/1/2022   The CJC Board supports Question A-Preserve the Liberty Act.  A referendum trying to nullify this 2020 law will be on the Nov. 8 ballot.  The Liberty Act defends everyone’s privacy by prohibiting county employees from asking someone’s immigration status.  Most police interactions are also covered by this law unless they violate state or federal laws.  For more information on the Liberty Act click here.

3/23/2021  Advocates Celebrate Winning Multi-Year Campaign to End Howard County’s ICE Contract to Detain Immigrants
Community activism leads to County Executive Calvin Ball’s policy change, ending the county’s collaboration with ICE and its enforcement of unjust federal immigration policies. Click here to read full press release. 

Many members of CJC are the descendants of Jews and non-Jews who immigrated to the US because of persecution, poverty and conflict in their home countries.  Supporting the rights of Soviet Jewry was an important cause for members in the 1980s as well as helping local immigrants find their footing.  We now find ourselves advocating for a new generation of immigrants who have fled from their homes in  Central and South America for many of the same reasons as our relatives.

In February 0f 2017, CJC’s Board of Directors passed a policy supporting immigration reform. Click here to view the policy.

In August 2019, we helped found the Howard County Coalition for Immigrant Justice (HCCIJ). Twelve partners in the interfaith and civic community have joined us including the Howard County Board of Rabbis. Click here to read our mission statement and click here to read policies adopted by HCCIJ. For more information and/or to be included on a listserv with immigration updates, contact Anna Rubin at

Since this  policy was passed, CJC’s Tikkun Olam/Social Justice Committee has presented a number of workshops and programs on issues affecting immigrants in which we:

  • Organized pro bono lawyers to help applicants for asylum complete their required applications
  • Presented programs on immigrants’ rights
  • Worked with other faith communities and secular groups to promote various progressive rallies and presentations
  • Lobbied our legislators on the county and state level regarding immigrant rights
  • Negotiated with county police for immigrant-friendly policies
  • Presented programs with local groups such as FIRN*, CASA de Maryland and Human Rights First
  • Supported a member family providing sanctuary to a Honduran family who recently arrived.

*Foreign Information Referral Network

Immigration-Related Bills before the Maryland Legislature

Click here to view a PowerPoint presented by Sebastian Brown, Campaign Strategist at the ACLU of Maryland, during CJC’s Refugee Shabbat, Friday, March 5, 2021

CJC has formally supported immigration reform since 2017.  Several important bills affecting immigrants are now being discussed in the very short session of the MD legislature:  

     1-Maryland Trust Act (SB88/HB304)

     2-Driver Privacy Act (SB234/HB23)

     3-Dignity Not Detention Act (HB 16)

     4-Universal Representation (SB317)

Read Roni Berkowitz’s sample letter for more information on these bills. 

Click here  to find your representative and if so moved, please contact them at your earliest convenience. Hearings will begin shortly.  

For more information please contact Anna Rubin.