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Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees Transitions to the Future

Dear Friends,

I am delighted to announce that, effective January 16th, 2017, the Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees (MFA) — a project launched by Tanenbaum — moved to the Tides Center to continue its critically important work.

In September 2013, the T A N E N B A U M | Center for Interreligious Understanding was proud to convene a broad range of religious leaders and faith-based organizations to begin what is now America’s leading interfaith response to the Syrian crisis.

As a project of Tanenbaum, MFA has grown to include more than 75 constituent organizations. In addition to impacting more than 85,000 refugees in urgent need of aid, MFA addressed nearly 9,000 people with face-to-face public outreach programs, and reached audiences numbering more than 470 million through print, broadcast and digital media.  MFA has conducted briefings in many parts of the U.S. as well as Canada, Israel, the U.K and E.U. It has directly addressed the three core fears that hamper humane and sensible refugee policies: economic impact, terrorism, Islamophobia.

Tanenbaum is proud to have incubated MFA’s early work and to have enabled its growth.  Having grown and expanded its reach in the last three years, MFA is now ready to begin operating separately as a project of the Tides Center, a 501(c)(3) organization that serves as a fiscal sponsor, and provides services to over 230 nonprofits across the United States.

Tanenbaum looks forward to MFA’s continuing success and to remaining a member of the Multifaith Alliance and an active partner on the critical issues where our work to combat religious prejudice, hatred and violence intersects.

Joyce S. Dubensky
Tanenbaum CEO

Religious diversity is increasing at the office, and so are pitfalls: Top 5 News Stories

Religious diversity is increasing at the office, and so are pitfalls

As religious diversity in the workplace increases, the opportunities for conflicts over religions also rises. In fact, one-third of American workers report that they have seen or experienced religious bias in the workplace. From Atheists to Evangelicals, discrimination based on beliefs or non-beliefs is a significant issue for employers and employees alike.

March on Washington showcased religious roots of Civil Rights …    

Modern advocates for civil rights often forget that the Civil Rights movement was largely grounded in religious roots. Religious leaders used their pulpits and their religions as sources for justice and racial equality. "It was natural for blacks to turn to the church in the civil rights movement as it was always this solid rock amid oppression," Aldon Morris, a sociologist at Northwestern University said. "You could summon up a great deal of courage through religion. It could empower people to confront all kinds of obstacles, including violence."

Labor Day and the unions' forgotten religious roots    

Labor Day orignated as the brain-child of the Noble Order of the Knights of Labor. The first labor unions joined forces with religious insitutions to defend the poor and provide legitimacy to the movement. But as religiosity is on the decline, the future of Labor Day hangs in the balance.

Atheist group can sue IRS over enforcement of pulpit politicking

A federal judged granted the atheist group Freedom from Religion Foundation permission to proceed with its lawsuit against the Internal Revenue Service. The group is suing the IRS for not enforcing its ban on the political activity of tax-exempt religious organizations. The FFRF wants the IRS to strengthen the ban.

Haynes column: School surrenders to religious intolerance    

A school put up a bullitein board about the five pillars of Islam as part of a curriculum that educates students about different faiths within their historical context. A picture of the board uploaded to facebook sparked community outrage as the misleading tag accused the board of promoting Islam while Christian prayers were strictly forbidden. Though this was not the purpose of the bullitein board, and other bullitein boards featuring different religions are placed around the school, the administration decided to take down the board on Islam.