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20 records – page 1 of 1.
Accession Number
2012-12-1
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2012-12-1
Material Format
textual record
Physical Description
2 v : 36 x 29 x 5 cm and 36 x 29 x 1.5 cm
Scope and Content
Accession consists of two volumes of the Canadian Jewish War Memorial Book of Remembrance. The first of these two volumes contains lists of Jewish soldiers who served in the Canadian military during the South African war, the First and Second World Wars and Korea. It also lists current day Jewish peacekeepers. There are photos and lists of Jewish chaplains who served in the military. For each war, it lists awards, casualties, soldiers' positions and identification numbers. The second volume contains lists of American soldiers who served in the Canadian military.
Custodial History
This book was presented by the Canadian Jewish War Memorial Association to the US Consulate who subsequently donated it to the Ontario Jewish Archives.
Subjects
Korean War, 1950-1953
South African War, 1899-1902
World War, 1914-1918
World War, 1939-1945
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2015-1-1
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2015-1-1
Material Format
textual record
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Date
1917-1964
Scope and Content
Accession consists of records documenting Samuel Berger and his family. Included is Sam's marriage certificate, wedding invitation, naturalization certificates, and pay book and discharge papers from the First World War. Also included is a copy of the birth certificate for Sam's wife, Rebecca (nee Rotenberg) and a newsclipping of the obituary for Rebecca's father, Lazar Rotenberg.
Custodial History
The records were in the possession of Goldie Berger, the daughter-in-law of Samuel Berger and wife of Leonard Berger.
Administrative History
Samuel Berger enlisted in the Canadian army in Oct. 1918. He was discharged in Dec. 1918. He married Rebecca Rotenberg in 1917.
Subjects
Canada--Armed Forces
World War, 1914-1918
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2015-9-8
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2015-9-8
Material Format
textual record
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Date
1950-1953
Scope and Content
Accession consists of a letter from Rabbi Slonim convening a meeting and minutes of meetings of the Rabbinical Welfare Committee over the period.
Custodial History
There is no information on the aquisition of the documents. However, the first letter in the textual records is from Rabbi Reuben Slonim and his name is included on all of the documents in the textual record.
Administrative History
The purpose of the Rabbinical Welfate Committee was (quoting from a document dated March 22, 1950) 'to consider matters that are strictly religious in nature. In matters of a community or public relations nature, the Committee will work closely with Congress.'
Subjects
Committees
Meetings
Religion
Name Access
Canadian Jewish Congress, Central Region (Toronto, Ont.)
Places
Toronto, Ont.
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2016-6-12
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2016-6-12
Material Format
graphic material
textual record
Physical Description
ca. 60 cm of textual records
11 photographs (3 negatives) : b&w ; 20 x 25 cm or smaller
Date
1976-[ca. 1990]
Scope and Content
Accession consists of textual and graphic records that trace Natan Sharansky's history as a prisoner of political conscience; the broader Refusenik issue; and the community advocacy efforts of Debby and Stan Solomon from 1976 and into the late 1980s at the local, national and international scales. Included are memos and newsletters from the Committee for Soviet Jewry (Ontario Region and national-level); background information as well as petition templates, speeches and planning documentation produced by the Committee to Release Anatoly Sharansky and the Beth Tikvah Synagogue in conjunction with community organizations, including the CJC and its Soviet Jewry social action committees, to support on-going advocacy efforts; correspondence with Canadian and American political representatives at the provincial/state and national levels; white papers/grey literature from non-governmental organizations about the persecution of the Soviet Jewry; planning documentation from the First Annual Sharansky Lectureship on Human Rights in 1980; correspondence, articles and ephemera associated with the granting of Sharansky's honourary law doctorate from York University in 1982; 1985 Freedom Rally/Weekend in Ottawa planning documentation and correspondence; 1987 National Conference on the Soviet Jewry and Mobilization for Freedom planning documentation; 1987 Community Rally at Massey Hall promotional materials; and promotional materials from Sharansky's autobiographical "Fear No Evil" 1988 book launch. Graphic material includes photographs of Sharansky's release during the February 11, 1986 American-Soviet prisoner exchange on the Glienicke Bridge in Berlin.
Identified in the photographs are: Debby Solomon; Alan Solomon; Natan Sharansky; Avital Sharansky; U.S. Ambassador Richard Burt;
Custodial History
Material was collected and/or created by Debby Solomon, Natan Sharansky's cousin. Debby donated it to the OJA.
Administrative History
Debby Solomon is the cousin of Anatoly (Natan) Sharansky, the Soviet born Israeli politician, human activist and author who spent nine years in Soviet prisons. Debby's father Boris Landis (born 1900) and Sharansky's father were first cousins.Their grandfathers were brothers. Debby's father immigrated 1929 to Toronto from Russia as his older brothers were already in Toronto. Debby and her husband Stan Solomon got involved in the community's activism efforts to free Sharansky and other Refuseniks.They were worked for many years on these efforts by planning programs through their synagogue Beth Tikvah and with Sam Filer, a lawyer and volunteer at the CJC who was also a member of Beth Tikvah.
Subjects
Antisemitism
Politics and government
Human rights
Demonstrations
Synagogues
Committees
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2016-3-69
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2016-3-69
Material Format
textual record
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Date
1950-1991
Scope and Content
Accession consists of interviews with various persons concerning their link with Goel Tzedec and its successor synagogue, Beth Tzedec. The interviews were primarily conducted by Ben Keyfetz and Jack Orenstien, the latter serving as the Executive Director of Beth Tzedec, at that time. Persons interviewed included Carl Keyfetz, N.N. Levine, Meyer Axler, and Bert Godfrey. There is also other information in the file concerning Cantors and Rabbis who served at Goel Tzedec, including Julius Price, Bernard Wladowsky, Jacob Gordon, and Samuel Sachs. There is a document from Bert Godfrey, undated but with a reference to 1950, titled 'Report of Construction Sub-Committee'. This presumably preceded the construction of the building housing the Beth Tzedec Synagogue on Bathurst Street. Also included is a 1955 publication of the Ne'ilah Service of Beth Tzedec to take place on February 6, 1955, concluding a half century of worship at the synagogue on University Avenue. Lastly, there are several pages of notes concerning the synagogue and its history.
Custodial History
There is no information on the acquisition of this material.
Subjects
Committees
Synagogues
Rabbis
Name Access
Kayfetz, Benjamin, 1916-2002
Places
Toronto, Ontario
Source
Archival Accessions
Part Of
Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care fonds
Committees and meetings series
Level
Series
ID
Fonds 14; Series 3
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care fonds
Committees and meetings series
Level
Series
Fonds
14
Series
3
Material Format
textual record
Date
1953-1985
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Scope and Content
Series consists of records documenting the various committees and ad hoc meetings of Baycrest Centre as well as its participation on joint committees with other agencies. Included are meeting notices, agendas and minutes, reports, correspondence and lists.
Subjects
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Accession Number
1993-3-1
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
1993-3-1
Material Format
textual record
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Date
1917-1919
Scope and Content
Accession consists of original and copies of documents and newspaper clippings pertaining to Lawrence Kert's service as a pilot during the First World War. Included are his graduation certificate from the Royal Flying Corps, his flight log, documents, and press clippings concerning his capture by the Germans.
Administrative History
Lawrence Kert left the University of Toronto to enlist in the 228th Battalion in 1915, and was transferred to the Royal Air Force in 1917. He was listed as missing, but was actually a prisoner of war. He survived and returned to Canada.
Subjects
Canada--Armed Forces
World War, 1914-1918
Name Access
Kert, Lawrence
Source
Archival Accessions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Cemetery Committee series
Level
Series
ID
Fonds 17; Series 22
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Cemetery Committee series
Level
Series
Fonds
17
Series
22
Material Format
textual record
Date
1951-1959
Physical Description
18 cm of textual records
Admin History/Bio
The Ontario government was putting pressure on the Jewish cemeteries spread around Toronto to clear up the disorder in the burial grounds to ensure a system of perpetual care. The cemeteries were approached with this in view. In the end, through the efforts of Al Ginsburg of Beth Tzedec, the Dawes Rd. and Jones Avenue properties were reorganized, a permanent fulltime groundskeeper was engaged (A.M. Levy) and adminstration was improved. The other cemeteries remained outside of this new organization which was named the Amalgamated Dawes Road Trustees. Some of these made their own arrangements. Canadian Jewish Congress lent its administrative help to the Amalgamated Dawes Rd. Trustees, hence this committee.
Scope and Content
Series consists of general files of the Cemetery Commitee.
Notes
Series formerly described and cited as RG254.
Subjects
Committees
Cemeteries
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Community Relations Committee series
Level
Series
ID
Fonds 17; Series 5
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Community Relations Committee series
Level
Series
Fonds
17
Series
5
Material Format
textual record
graphic material
Date
1938-1978, 1991
Physical Description
6.5 m of textual records
15 photographs
Admin History/Bio
The Joint Community Relations Committee was created in 1938 by the Canadian Jewish Congress, Central Region and the Toronto Lodge B’nai Brith. It was originally named the Joint Public Relations Committee and was responsible for combating antisemitism in Ontario. Public statements, by agreement, were made only by the Canadian Jewish Congress as B’nai Brith recognized the uniqueness of its national constitution. The committee was led by lay leaders from the community and a staff representative from the CJC. Shortly thereafter, similar committees were set up in Montreal and in Western Canada, and soon a National Joint Community Relations Committee was established.
The committee played a key role in achieving the early anti-discrimination act of 1944, and the Fair Employment Practices Act of 1951, leading to the Human Rights Code of today. It was prominent in the action against the spread of sectarian religious teachings in the public schools and took the lead in pressing for legislation against the dissemination of racial hatred. It acted for the preservation of religious and human rights and worked with numerous religious, fraternal and ethnic organizations in the wider community. The committee also investigated and acted upon all complaints of discrimination, antisemitism and other such incidents. They supplied Jewish and secular schools with educational materials including pamphlets and books, and conducted intercultural and inter-religious work in the community through organized lectures, seminars, institutes, and plenary sessions.
The committee was composed of equal representation from both the Canadian Jewish Congress, and the B’nai Brith. The money for the operation of the Committee was first provided by both organizations, however, in a 1947 agreement between the National CJC and B’nai Brith Canada, the parties stated that the finances for the committee would be raised in the name of the CJC, with B’nai Brith agreeing to make “token” contributions and co-operate with Congress’ fundraising campaign. As well, the professional staff and support persons for the committee, along with their salaries, came solely from the Central Region CJC.
The executive director (also referred to as the executive secretary) was the primary staff person responsible for carrying out the policy and activities of the JPRC, which included preparing press releases, liaisoning with affiliated groups, organizations, individuals, journalists, government representatives and any others wanting or needing information on issues relating to the JPRC’s work. The executive director acted as the recording secretary at all committee meetings and was the keeper of all official documents.
Around 1978, due in part to the earlier creation of the B’nai Brith’s League for Human Rights in 1970, the Canadian Jewish Congress and the B’nai Brith terminated their joint relationship with the committee. At the time, the CJC felt that B’nai Brith was playing a dual role in advocacy through the League and through the JPRC. B’nai Brith, in turn, felt that the CJC was shutting out the B’nai Brith’s voice. Nevertheless, the “Joint” was not dropped from the name until around 1991. Today, the committee functions under the sole direction of the CJC as the Community Relations Committee, Ontario Region and continues to perform many of the same functions in the community.
In 2011 the Community Relations Committee ceased to exist when the CJC Ontario office was closed and the functions of the CJC were folded into the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA).
Committee name changes were: Community Relations Committee, CJC, Ontario Region (ca. 1991-2011) Joint Community Relations Committee, CJC, Ontario Region (ca. 1978-ca. 1991) Joint Community Relations Committee, Central Region (1962-1978) Joint Community Relations Committee, (1938-1962)
Scope and Content
Series consists of five sub-series. Sub-series 1 contains the agendas, minutes and associated documentation supporting meetings of the Community Relations Committee. Sub-series 2 contains speeches , publications, press releases and reports presented and/or distributed by the Committee. Sub-series 3 consists of case files documenting the Committee's activities of combating specific antisemitism and Holocaust-denying activities in Canada. Extensive documentation about Ernst Zundel is included Sub-series 4 contains 9 sub-sub-series documenting various categories of research files accumulated by the Committee. Sub-series 5 contains the general office records of the Committee and includes correspondence and memos of the Executive Director and records providing insight to the internal organization and management of the Committee's internal functions.
For more details see descriptions within the scope and contents notes at the sub-series and sub-sub-series levels
Notes
Previously processed and cited a MG8 S
Physical extent note: when originally listed in 1988, this series contained about 20.5 metres of textual records. When partial processing and reorganization had been completed in 2013, 14 metres had been culled because those documents were duplicates, newspaper clippings, created by outside agencies or maintained in other agencies.
Associated material note:Library and Archives of Canada holds the records for the National B’nai Brith which does contain 30cm of material on the National Joint Community Relations Committee. The Canadian Jewish Congress National Archives in Montreal holds the records for the National Joint Community Relations Committee, which contains some files on the Ontario Region, as they reported to the National office. The whereabouts of the B’nai Brith records pertaining to the Central Region activities are currently unknown.
Subjects
Committees
Arrangement
Because records in this series had been previously organized in a manner that proved difficult for use by archivists and researchers, the records, during 2010 and 2011, were totally rearranged and described to comply with RAD standards, to provide ease of access by researchers, and to fully reflect the activities and organizational history of the Community Relations Committee of the Canadian Jewish Congress during and after the period when it was a joint committee with the B'Nai Brith.
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
ID
Fonds 23; File 3
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
Fonds
23
File
3
Material Format
textual record
Date
1960-1966
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Scope and Content
This file consists of textual records relating to Harry Simon's work as Chairman of the Jewish Labour Committee. The records include correspondence, event invitations and flyers and activity summaries.
Subjects
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
ID
Fonds 23; File 4
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
Fonds
23
File
4
Material Format
textual record
graphic material
Date
1967-1972
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
2 photographs : b&w (1 negative) ; 26 x 21 cm and 12 x 10 cm
Scope and Content
This file consists of records relating to Harry Simon's work as Chairman of the Jewish Labour Committee. The records include correspondence, event invitations and flyers, activity summaries, press releases, speeches and one photograph.
Subjects
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
ID
Fonds 23; File 5
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
Fonds
23
File
5
Material Format
textual record
Date
1973-1975
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Scope and Content
This file consists of textual records relating to Harry Simon's work as Chairman of the Jewish Labour Committee. The records include correspondence, event invitations and flyers, press releases and meeting minutes.
Subjects
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
ID
Fonds 23; File 6
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
Fonds
23
File
6
Material Format
textual record
Date
1976-1984
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Scope and Content
This file consists of textual records relating to Harry Simon's work as Chairman of the Jewish Labour Committee. The records include correspondence, event invitations and flyers, and press releases.
Subjects
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
ID
Fonds 23; File 8
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
Fonds
23
File
8
Material Format
textual record
Date
1978
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Scope and Content
This file consists of textual records relating to Harry Simon's work as Chairman of the Anti-Nazi Committee of the Canadian Jewish Congress/B'nai Brith Joint Community Relations Committee. The records include correspondence, newsclippings, meeting notices and minutes, bulletins and flyers.
Subjects
Anti-Nazi movement
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
ID
Fonds 23; File 9
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Harry Simon fonds
Level
File
Fonds
23
File
9
Material Format
textual record
Date
1979-1982
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Scope and Content
This file consists of textual records relating to Harry Simon's work as Chairman of the Anti-Nazi Committee of the Canadian Jewish Congress/B'nai Brith Joint Community Relations Committee. The records include correspondence, newsclippings, and meeting notices and minutes.
Subjects
Anti-Nazi movement
Committees
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Joseph Baruch Salsberg fonds
Jewish community involvement series
Level
File
ID
Fonds 92; Series 4; File 6
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Joseph Baruch Salsberg fonds
Jewish community involvement series
Level
File
Fonds
92
Series
4
File
6
Material Format
textual record
Date
1967-1973
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Admin History/Bio
In 1970 many Jewish groups in Ontario organized to help refusniks who were being persecuted in the Soviet Union and to pressure local, national and international governments to address Soviet antisemitism. In early 1971, the Action Committee for Soviet Jewry (ACSJ) was formed by the (then) Central Region of the CJC to coordinate the activities of, and provide stable funding and administrative support for, these various ad hoc committees and action groups that had sprung up across Ontario.
The ACSJ originally reported to the CJC’s Steering Committee for Soviet Jewry (SCSJ), but by the mid-1970s the reporting of the two committees was reversed, with the steering committee reporting to the action committee. By 1977, the action committee and the steering committee were merged into the newly-renamed CJC Ontario Region’s Committee for Soviet Jewry (occasionally referred to as the Toronto Committee). J. B. Salsberg was the first SCSJ Chairman, serving in this capacity until 1976.
Scope and Content
File consists of records documenting J. B. Salsberg's involvement in the CJC's Committee for Soviet Jewry. Included are booklets, handwritten notes, newspaper clippings, articles, correspondence, meeting minutes of the National Committee on Soviet Jewry and the Steering Committee for Soviet Jewry, reports, newsletters, conference booklets, and a brochure.
Subjects
Committees
Jews--Soviet Union
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Joseph Baruch Salsberg fonds
Jewish community involvement series
Level
File
ID
Fonds 92; Series 4; File 7
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Joseph Baruch Salsberg fonds
Jewish community involvement series
Level
File
Fonds
92
Series
4
File
7
Material Format
textual record
Date
1975
Physical Description
3 cm of textual records
Admin History/Bio
In 1970 many Jewish groups in Ontario organized to help refusniks who were being persecuted in the Soviet Union and to pressure local, national and international governments to address Soviet antisemitism. In early 1971, the Action Committee for Soviet Jewry (ACSJ) was formed by the (then) Central Region of the CJC to coordinate the activities of, and provide stable funding and administrative support for, these various ad hoc committees and action groups that had sprung up across Ontario.
The ACSJ originally reported to the CJC’s Steering Committee for Soviet Jewry (SCSJ), but by the mid-1970s the reporting of the two committees was reversed, with the steering committee reporting to the action committee. By 1977, the action committee and the steering committee were merged into the newly-renamed CJC Ontario Region’s Committee for Soviet Jewry (occasionally referred to as the Toronto Committee). J. B. Salsberg was the first SCSJ Chairman, serving in this capacity until 1976.
Scope and Content
File consists of records documenting J. B. Salsberg's involvement in the CJC's Committee for Soviet Jewry. Included are newspaper clippings, bulletins, executive committee meeting minutes of the Committee for Soviet Jewry, a booklet, and a programme for the 23rd anniversary of the execution of Soviet Jewish poets, novelists and artists at the Beth Tzedec Synagogue.
Subjects
Committees
Jews--Soviet Union
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Joseph Baruch Salsberg fonds
Jewish community involvement series
Level
File
ID
Fonds 92; Series 4; File 8
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Joseph Baruch Salsberg fonds
Jewish community involvement series
Level
File
Fonds
92
Series
4
File
8
Material Format
textual record
Date
1986-1991
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Admin History/Bio
In 1970 many Jewish groups in Ontario organized to help Refusniks who were being persecuted in the Soviet Union and to pressure local, national and international governments to address Soviet antisemitism. In early 1971, the Action Committee for Soviet Jewry (ACSJ) was formed by the (then) Central Region of the CJC to coordinate the activities of, and provide stable funding and administrative support for, these various ad hoc committees and action groups that had sprung up across Ontario.
The ACSJ originally reported to the CJC’s Steering Committee for Soviet Jewry (SCSJ), but by the mid-1970s the reporting of the two committees was reversed, with the steering committee reporting to the action committee. By 1977, the action committee and the steering committee were merged into the newly-renamed CJC Ontario Region’s Committee for Soviet Jewry (occasionally referred to as the Toronto Committee). J. B. Salsberg was the first SCSJ Chairman, serving in this capacity until 1976.
Scope and Content
File consists of records documenting J.B. Salsberg's involvement in the CJC's Committee for Soviet Jewry. Included are booklets, reports, agendas, correspondence, meeting minutes, conference material for the Regional Conference on Israel and Soviet Jewry, and newspaper clippings.
Subjects
Committees
Jews--Soviet Union
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Committee meeting agendas, minutes, reports and correspondence series
Level
File
ID
Fonds 17; Series 1; File 604
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Committee meeting agendas, minutes, reports and correspondence series
Level
File
Fonds
17
Series
1
File
604
Material Format
textual record
Date
1980
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Subjects
Committees
Jews--Arab countries
Accession Number
2005-2-2
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Committee for Soviet Jewry series
Level
Series
ID
Fonds 17; Series 3
Source
Archival Descriptions
Part Of
Canadian Jewish Congress, Ontario Region fonds
Committee for Soviet Jewry series
Level
Series
Fonds
17
Series
3
Material Format
textual record
graphic material
Date
1967-1992
Physical Description
4.5 m of textual records
1822 photographs : b&w ; 20 x 25 cm or smaller
Admin History/Bio
The earliest impetus for the creation of a Canadian Jewish Congress (CJC) committee to focus on the issue of Soviet Jews was in response to the infamous “Leningrad trials” of 31 dissident Soviet Jews in the winter of 1970. Concurrently, the Soviet government began to systematically persecute almost all Jews who applied for permission to emigrate. The issuing of exit visas was refused (the genesis of the term “Refusnik”), usually on exaggerated claims of national security, after which the applicants were often dismissed from their jobs, recalled to military service, or similarly persecuted by state authorities. Those who publicly protested such treatment were subsequently arrested, detained for long periods, or tried as examples to others and sent to Siberian labour camps.
When information about the plight of Soviet Jews reached Canada, Toronto’s Jews responded immediately and decisively. Synagogue congregations, student groups, women’s organizations, professional organizations and community groups all established independent committees to aid Soviet Jews directly and to pressure local, national and international governments to address Soviet antisemitism. Very quickly these committees began organizing mass rallies, letter writing campaigns, petitions, targeted protests and direct aid involving large numbers of people and considerable fundraising efforts. From 1971 to the late 1980s the cause of Soviet Jewry remained, along with support for The State of Israel, the most significant issue to the Jewish community.
The Action Committee for Soviet Jewry (ACSJ) was formed by the (then) Central Region of the CJC in early 1971 in order to coordinate the activities of, and provide stable funding and administrative support for, the various ad hoc committees and action groups that had sprung up across Toronto and the rest of Ontario. Organizations coordinated by the Action Committee included university student groups, the Group of 35, Women for Soviet Jewry (WSJ), B’nai B’rith, and the Canadian Zionist Federation (CZF). The ACSJ originally reported to the CJC’s Steering Committee for Soviet Jewry (SCSJ), but by the mid-1970s the reporting of the two committees was reversed, with the Steering Committee reporting to the Action Committee. By 1977, the Action Committee and the Steering Committee were merged into the newly-renamed CJC Ontario Region’s Committee for Soviet Jewry (occasionally referred to as the Toronto Committee).
The first Chairman of the SCSJ was the prominent Toronto politician and activist Joseph B. Salsberg. Later chairs, including Sam Filer, Phyllis Sugar, Reg Adelman, author Jeanette Goldman, Joyce Eklove, and Judge Ted Matlow were also involved with affiliated local groups whose activities were coordinated by the SCSJ. Sam Filer, its first permanent Secretary, became in 1976 its second Chairman. He also served as Chairman of the Toronto Action Committee for Soviet Jewry and was an original co-founder of Lawyers and Jurists for Soviet Jewry. Similarly, Phyllis Sugar was a Co-chair of the ACSJ with Reg Adelman in the early to mid-1970s, while simultaneously serving as the Chair of WSJ. Genya Intrator, the first Chair of WSJ in the early 1970s, later served as first Chair of the Canadian Committee for Soviet Jewry. Despite having its first meeting in Winnipeg, the Canadian Committee had most of its leadership and activities in Toronto. Toronto residents Sydney Harris (later Judge Harris), David Satok, Genya Intrator and David Sadowski all chaired this committee as it developed a national agenda through contacts with affiliated organizations across the country, while coordinating internationally with groups such as the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews based in New York.
Towards the end of the 1980s, many of the restrictions regarding exit visas for refusniks were removed and increasingly Russian Jews began to immigrate to Israel, the United States and Canada. A large percentage of the latter settled in Toronto. By 1991, in response to the changes in Russia and the former Soviet republics, the CJC’s local and national Soviet Jewry Committees were wound up and their leadership began to focus on new issues, such as the integration of Soviet Jewish immigrants into Canada and the continuing struggle to fight antisemitism in the successor states of the former Soviet Union. To this end, the CJC formed a Political Liaison Committee in the early 1990s. Internationally, however, many Russian Jewish advocacy groups continued to operate on the foundation of activism and community organization established during the decades of solidarity built around the Soviet Jewry cause.
Custodial History
The records in this series were accumulated and maintained in the offices of the CJC under the jurisdiction of Samuel Resnick, in his role as the Director of the Community Action for Israel Committee, and as the main CJC staff employee for overseeing the Action Committee for Soviet Jewry and Steering Committee for Soviet Jewry, which eventually coalesced as simply the Committee for Soviet Jewry circa 1977. By 1980, Resnick’s title was Director of the Committee for Soviet Jewry, Central Region, making him the primary full-time staffer of the CJC involved in the Soviet Jewry cause.
Scope and Content
Series consists of extensive planning, administrative and operational records including meeting minutes, correspondence, budgets and membership lists. Records pertaining to activities include numerous event and protest photographs, articles, petitions, posters and other press materials. Records related to the gathering of information regarding Soviet Jewry include transcripts of telegrams and telephone conversations, background fact sheets and many individual case files.
This series has been arranged into six sub-series. Sub-series 1 consists of Ontario Region committee meeting agendas and minutes. Sub-series 2 consists of the correspondence files documenting various activities of that committee. Sub-series 3 consists of the agendas, minutes and general correspondence of the National Committee for Soviet Jewry. Sub-series 4 consists of records documenting affiliated Jewish organizations that collaborated with the CJC in protesting the persecution of Soviet Jews. Sub-series 5 consists of records documenting the various protest activities such as lobbying, letter writing, public rallies, marches and demonstrations. Sub-series 6 , Rufusnik Cases, consists of 3 sub-sub-series, containing individual case files, large published lists, and reference publications about Soviet Jews who were refused permission to emigrate (refusniks).
Notes
Physical extent note: although over 28 m of Soviet Jewry records were originally transferred to the OJA, more than 23 m of those records have been culled due to their origin (non-Canadian sources), format (outside periodicals and publications), because they were merely externally-created reference materials, or because they were part of the very large volumes of duplicates that made up the majority of the box contents. Records documenting the activities of other CJC Committees have also been removed for future processing within more appropriately-titled series within Fonds 17.
Subjects
Committees
Jews--Soviet Union
Arrangement
Because the Soviet Jewry records donated by the Canadian Jewish Congress had not been maintained in a discernable original order, they had to be reorganized into their current arrangement by the processing archivist.
Source
Archival Descriptions
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Name

Place

Language