Monday, December 18, 2006

Postville, The Forward, and Action - A Huge Update

The issue of not only how animals are treated both pre- and post-mortem, but also how the business of kosher slaughter is run, including treatment of the human laborers, has not been forgotten. On the contrary, much work has been going on behind the scenes, and today an article appeared in the Forward that documents the results of this work, specifically on the part of the Conservative movement.

While other people from other movements have talked about this issue on one side or another (some folks have insisted there's no issue to begin with), I'm particularly pleased with the "action and not just words" approach taken by the Conservative movement, and I personally extend my heartfelt thanks to all those involved who have put so much into recognizing that kashrut has to do with the holistic reality of how this meat got into the store and on the table, from what goes on in the animal's experience to what goes on in the experience of those working in the kosher food industry.

In my opinion, one cannot claim piety in religious observance of kashrut when that same observance leads to the harm of other human beings.

Firm as I am in that belief, this excerpt from the Forward's article was particularly exciting:

Conservative movement leaders said that they plan to establish a “tsedek
hekhsher,” or a justice certification, that would ensure kosher food producers
“have met a set of standards that determine the social responsibility of kosher
food producers, particularly in the area of workers rights.”

You can read the full article here:

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