Over the past several weeks, we have witnessed the bravery of the Ukrainian people, the resilience of an entire nation and the persistence of journalists who recognize that reporting the truth has never been more critical.
Amid the heartbreak and horrors of war, we’re privileged to partner with organizations dedicated to advocating for the rights and wellbeing of the people whose lives have been forever changed by this crisis.
The Committee to Protect Journalists is shedding light on targeted attacks on members of the media, and Physicians for Human Rights is working with regional partners to document war crimes. Whistleblower Aid and the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights are highlighting the threats of misinformation. HIAS is helping refugees fleeing persecution find safety and security. The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee is providing critical food and medicine to Holocaust survivors in Ukraine, while its team and Hillel International are offering Ukrainian Jews some stability amid chaos through opportunities to observe Passover.
My colleagues at WEST and I hope and pray for a peaceful future. In the meantime, we will continue shining a light on those tirelessly protecting rights and freedoms, amplifying the needs of Ukrainians who are fleeing as well as those who remain, and elevating the voices of those who are risking their lives to disseminate the truth about what is happening.
President & Founder, West End Strategy Team
P.S. While all eyes are on Ukraine, the promise of democracy is threatened elsewhere too. Here in the United States, PEN America’s new Index of School Book Bans is grabbing headlines – including from MSNBC’s Ali Velshi while on location in Ukraine. Politically motivated book bans are depriving students in school districts across the country of their right to learn, and educational gag orders are restricting teachers’ freedom of expression.
P.P.S. As we partner with our clients to strengthen democracy, shape U.S. diplomacy and foreign policy, counter racism and bigotry, advocate on behalf of refugees, support survivors of domestic violence, and protect human and civil rights, our team is growing. Please consider sharing our openings with your networks.
Featuring the Committee to Protect Journalists
At least six journalists have been killed in Ukraine since the start of Russia’s invasion. Rob Mahoney, executive director of the Committee to Protect Journalists, joined CBS News’ Elaine Quijano to discuss the challenges and what more can be done to protect reporters in the war zone.
Featuring the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
JDC, which has evacuated more than 11,600 Jews from Ukraine, has shipped more than 2 tons of matzah, over 400 bottles of grape juice and over 700 pounds of kosher Passover food for refugees in Poland, Moldova, Hungary and Romania.
Featuring Physicians for Human Rights
“When a country attacks health-care facilities, they are sending the message that they don’t have any boundaries to what they can do. This is targeting people who cannot defend themselves and who cannot pose a threat because they’re patients. It is a way to break people’s resilience.”
Mark Hetfield, president and CEO of international aid organization HIAS, joined American Voices with Alicia Menendez to discuss the trauma this humanitarian crisis is having on Ukrainian children, the push to get refugees into the United States, and the resources needed most to help refugees now.
Featuring Whistleblower Aid
The complaints were made to the Justice Department and the Treasury Department by Whistleblower Aid, a nonprofit organization representing John Choe, a Facebook contractor hired to study extremism on the platforms after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol.
Featuring NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights
“I think coming out of this, [Russia is] gonna be much closer to China . . . where if you try to get on a Facebook group talking about spreading democracy in Russia, you might have the police knocking at your door very quickly.”
Featuring Hillel International and HIAS
Across Europe and across the world, Ukrainian refugees will attend Passover seders starting tonight. And they’ll tell the story of wandering while they’re refugee themselves. There are large seders planned by refugee groups like HIAS and Jewish groups like Hillel International, as well as countless individuals heeding the Passover call to let all who are hungry come and eat.