This report covers January 2018-August 2019. Starting in September 2019, our annual reports will cover September of one year through August of the following year.
From January 2018 through August 2019, Adalah-NY has continued to promote the cultural boycott of Israel by organizing protests of performances by complicit Israeli cultural institutions, encouraging artists not to perform in Israel, and promoting the work of artists and cultural workers that support and uphold the Palestinian call for boycott; continued to promote the economic boycott of Israel by targeting companies that profit from the Israeli occupation and colonization of Palestine; supported the right to boycott in New York and beyond at a time when this right is increasingly under attack; raised general awareness about the Palestinian struggle for liberation and responded to specific calls for action and solidarity from Palestine; connected with other groups working for social justice in Palestine, the US, and beyond; and actively worked on identifying and undoing manifestations of white supremacy within our organizing.
Some highlights of this period are below.
- Roses in Salted Soil: Conversation in Poetry, for Dareen Tatour (5/3/18): Adalah-NY endorsed and tabled at a poetry and art benefit for Palestinian poet Dareen Tatour on the day she was scheduled to receive her verdict for the “crime” of posting a poem on Facebook. The event was organized by Jewish Voice for Peace: Arts & Culture.
- A Teach-In On Cultural Boycott, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (5/5/18): An Adalah-NY member was invited by Philly BDS to speak about cultural boycott at an event in support of the "Philly, Don't Orchestrate Apartheid” campaign to demand that the Philadelphia Orchestra cancel a planned trip to Israel. Members of Adalah-NY also worked with local Philadelphia activists and organizations to strategize the "Philly, Don't Orchestrate Apartheid” campaign.
- DJs for BDS: The People’s Party for Palestine (5/19/18): Adalah-NY endorsed a fundraiser for Shoruq, an organization in the Dheisheh Refugee Camp that does youth-led Palestinian cultural work, which was organized by Jewish Voice for Peace: Arts&Culture and DJS4BDS.com and held at The Keep in Ridgewood, Queens. Adalah-NY was tasked with organizing an information table to educate attendees about the role of BDS and cultural boycott in the struggle for justice for Palestinians.
- Protest Batsheva Dance Company at Dance Fest Israel 70 (7/10/18): A musical protest with over 50 attendees was held on the sidewalk just outside New York’s Joyce Theater to oppose the opening night performance by the Batsheva Dance Company, a leader in helping the Israeli government whitewash its violent repression of the Palestinian people. Batsheva’s performances at the Joyce Theater from July 10 to 22 were supported by the Consulate General of Israel in New York and were part of the Israeli government’s Dance Fest Israel 70. Dance Fest Israel 70 is a component of the Israeli government’s celebration of the anniversary of the establishment of the Israeli state. For Palestinians, 1948 is commemorated as the Nakba, the catastrophic loss of their homeland.
- Campaign to cancel Gesher Theatre performances (September-October 2018): Adalah-NY, along with dozens of Palestinian and international cultural institutions and individual artists, issued a letter to organizations in Toronto, New York, and Pittsburgh, calling on them to cancel Israeli government-sponsored performances by the Gesher Theatre.
- Exposed “Creative Community for Peace” as a front for right-wing “StandWithUs” (10/4/18): Worked with Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) to issue a press release about tax documents revealing that Creative Community for Peace is a front group for right-wing lobbying group StandWithUs, and essentially an alternate name for the organization Israel Emergency Alliance.
- Free Brunch, Free Palestine: Protest the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (2/3/19): Organized a protest outside Carnegie Hall while the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra held a lavish brunch to sustain its whitewashing of Israeli apartheid. We sang, chanted, heard the music of the Rude Mechanical Orchestra, and ate our own free Palestinian brunch.
- Protest Batsheva at BAM for Israeli Apartheid Week 2019 (3/27/19): Over 60 people attended this music- and dance-filled protest of the opening night performance of the Batsheva Dance Company, a leader in helping the Israeli government whitewash its systematic repression of the Palestinian people. The protest—held a few days before the one-year anniversary of Gaza’s Great March of Return—featured a live dance performance by the Brooklyn-based Freedom Dabka Group and music from the Rude Mechanical Orchestra.
- Cultural boycott compilation (ongoing): During the year, Adalah-NY started to work with several US-based musicians who plan to create a compilation of music by artists who pledge to respect the cultural boycott of Israel.
- Cultural boycott advocacy, campaign support, and education (ongoing): Throughout the year, members of Adalah-NY educated the public about cultural boycott by distributing our “What is cultural boycott?” zine, tabling at events and actions, promoting cultural boycott campaigns through social media, and working on cultural boycott campaigns with groups and individuals in Palestine, New York City, and around the world. We also continued to collect signatories to the NYC Cultural Boycott Pledge on our website, and promoted the work of Palestinian artists and arts institutions (such as Jenin Freedom Theatre) whenever possible.
General Awareness and Response to Calls for Solidarity from Palestine
- Palestine and the Future of Academia (1/5/18): Adalah-NY endorsed an event held at New York University and organized by MLA (Modern Language Association) Members for Justice in Palestine. Co-sponsors of the event included the following MLA groups: Arabic Languages, Literatures, and Cultures; Race and Ethnicity Forum; and West Asia Languages, Literatures, and Cultures.
- Gaza 5K Race (3/24/18): Members and friends of Adalah-NY formed the Friends of Adalah-NY team and participated in the Gaza 5K Race in NYC, an annual walk/run hosted by UNRWA-USA to raise funds for UNRWA's mental health program. The team ranked 4th in fundraising with $9,149.
- All out for Gaza: Solidarity with the Great March for Return (4/6/18): Adalah-NY called an emergency demonstration in Union Square in coalition with Apartheid Divest CUNY, Jewish Voice for Peace-NYC, Jews Say No!, Queers Against Israeli Apartheid-NYC, Palestine Solidarity Alliance of Hunter College, and Tarab-NYC.
- Protest Schumer’s and Gillibrand’s complicity with Israel (4/26/18): Adalah-NY joined Jewish Voice for Peace-NYC, Jews Say No!, and other groups demonstrating at the NYC district offices of Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, mourning the 111 Palestinian protesters killed by the Israeli military in Gaza since March 30. The NY groups called upon the senators to break their silence in the face of Israel’s use of deadly force against the Palestinian people, and to support Palestinians’ rights to live in dignity and return home.
- 70 Years of Nakba – Remember, Resist, Return – Palestine (5/19/18): Adalah-NY organized a demonstration in Grand Central Terminal in coalition with Palestine Solidarity Alliance of Hunter College, NYU Jewish Voice for Peace, NYU Students for Justice in Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace-NYC, Jews Say No!, NYC Queers Against Israeli Apartheid, and Apartheid Divest CUNY.
- Free Olives for a Free Palestine at Greenmarkets (6/23/18, 8/25/18, and 11/10/18): Members of Adalah-NY organized educational outreach activities at neighborhood greenmarkets in which shoppers were offered free olives and flyers about the Israeli destruction of olive trees in Palestine. Donations were also collected for the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights and Palestinian Fair Trade Association (PFTA) “Plant an Olive Tree in Palestine” campaign. On June 23, we conducted the activity at the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket in Brooklyn. On August 25, we conducted the activity in partnership with members of Uptown Progressive Action at the Inwood Greenmarket in Manhattan. On November 10, we responded to Fairway’s “Taste Israel” promotion with another Free Olives, Free Palestine event, working with members of Uptown Progressive Action to educate customers.
- Prospects for post-Trump activism and overview of current US BDS work (9/15/18): Members of Adalah-NY presented at La Fête de L’Humanité in Paris, France, organized by BDS France and UJFP (Union Juive Française pour la Paix).
- BDS 101: Until Freedom, Justice, & Equality (9/30/18): Adalah-NY members presented at the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights conference in St. Paul, Minnesota, about building BDS campaigns, with a focus on cultural boycott.
- Global Kairos for Justice Statement Delivery (5/15/19): On Nakba Day, Adalah-NY members participated with Friends of Sabeel North America in delivering a letter to the Israeli embassy from faith-based communities that reiterates the demands of the Palestinian BDS movement.
Challenging Privilege in Our Organization
- Challenging White Supremacy Workshop (1/28/18): Adalah-NY hired a trainer to conduct a 3-hour workshop for Adalah-NY members so we can deepen our understanding about how our organizational structure and culture can reinforce white supremacy, and learn strategies to challenge privilege and make Adalah-NY a more inclusive organization.
- Challenging White Supremacy Retreat (3/9/19): Adalah-NY hired a diversity trainer to lead us through a process and facilitate a day-long retreat to look at ways our organizing structure reinforces white supremacy and figure out concrete next steps to challenge this.
- 7th Annual Immigrant Worker Justice Tour (5/1/18): Adalah-NY endorsed the Freedom Cities campaign and members participated in the Freedom Cities May Day action: the 7th Annual Immigrant Worker Justice Tour, led by Enlace, Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI), Million Hoodies, and the NY Worker Center Federation.
- DJs for BDS: The People’s Party for Palestine (5/19/18): Organized by Jewish Voice for Peace: Arts&Culture and DJS4BDS.com as a fundraiser for Shoruq, an organization doing youth-led Palestinian cultural work in Dheisheh Refugee Camp.
- International Law, Seeking Justice, and the Great March of Return: A Discussion of the Palestinian Right of Return (9/26/18): Panel moderated by an Adalah-NY member.
- alQaws Party x NYC (10/2/18): Fundraiser for alQaws for Sexual & Gender Diversity in Palestinian Society. Hosted by alQaws, Adalah-NY, Tarab NYC, NYC Queers Against Israeli Apartheid, and Jewish Voice for Peace-New York City.
- An Evening with Political Cartoonist Mohammad Sabaaneh (11/15/18): Organized by The Friends of the Jenin Freedom Theatre.
- Defeating Lawfare: Palestine, Academic Freedom & Activism (2/27/19): Discussion with Professor Rabab Abdulahdi, who has filed a lawsuit to hold San Francisco State University accountable for discriminatory policies, and Mark Kleiman, attorney representing her. Co-sponsored by JVP-NYC, Palestine Legal, CUNY for Palestine, IfNotNow, and Jews Say No!
- The Great March of Return: How a Vision Sparked a Movement (3/14/19): Discussion with Gaza Freedom March organizer Ahmed Abu Artema, Jehad Abusalim, and Amy Goodman.
- The Ongoing Nakba (5/20/19): A screening of the documentary film "1948: Creation and Catastrophe" that featured personal testimonies from Palestinian people whose families have been affected by the Nakba.
- The Right to Boycott (5/23/19): Three experts discuss the importance of BDS and the rise of anti-BDS laws. Organized by Brooklyn for Peace.
- Campaign to persuade Jennifer Lopez to cancel Israel performance (6/18/19): Organized by Code Pink.
- Member of the International Boycott HP Network
- Member of United States Campaign for Palestinian Rights
- Member of NYS Freedom to Boycott Coalition – Coalition of over 100 organizations responding to attempts by New York politicians and legislators to stop the BDS movement.
- Member of the People’s Forum
In 2018-19, WESPAC Foundation continued to act as our fiscal sponsor. We are changing our reporting procedures to align with WESPAC Foundation’s September-August fiscal year. Since this transitional report covers our activities from January 2018 through August 2019, below are two overlapping financial summaries: one for 2018 and one for FY 2019 (September 1, 2018 - August 31, 2019).
2018 FINANCIAL REPORT
- Donations from individuals: $4,860
- Cost sharing for special events (2017): $600
TOTAL 2018 REVENUE: $5,460
- Website hosting, design, maintenance, services; email services: $2,149
- Demonstrations and actions: $637
- Travel to national meetings: $200
- Meeting, workshop and training expenses: $1,827
- Magazine and benefit advertisement: $200
- Organizational dues: $100
- Educational materials, postage, and supplies: $11
- Administrative fees for donations (paid to fiscal sponsor and online donation services): $519
TOTAL 2018 EXPENSES: $5,643
FY 2019 FINANCIAL REPORT (SEPTEMBER 1, 2018 - AUGUST 31, 2019)
FY 2019 REVENUE
- Donations from individuals: $5,237
TOTAL FY 2019 REVENUE: $5,237
FY 2019 EXPENSES
- Website hosting, design, maintenance, services; email services: $3,670
- Demonstrations and actions: $290
- Meeting, workshop and training expenses: $2,968
- Organizational dues: $150
- Educational materials, postage, and supplies: $504
- Storage: $210
- Administrative fees for donations (paid to fiscal sponsor and online donation services): $513
TOTAL FY 2019 EXPENSES: $8,305