Texas Town Deletes Israel Boycott Clause From Hurricane Relief Grants by the Forward

Texas Town Deletes Israel Boycott Clause From Hurricane Relief Grants

Image by Getty

(JTA) — Private citizens who apply for Hurricane Harvey rebuilding funds in Dickinson, Texas no longer have to certify that they will not boycott Israel.

The Dickinson City Council on Tuesday voted to remove a clause from a relief application that had drawn the ire of the American Civil Liberties Union and pro-boycott activists, the Houston Chronicle reported.

The city, located near Houston, put the requirement in the application in order to comply with a new state law, signed in May, that requires all state contractors to certify that they are not participating in boycotts of Israel.

During the meeting on Tuesday, the council created two different applications for contracting with the city: one for businesses and one for private citizens. Businesses will still have to certify that they do not participate in the anti-Israel boycott.

Dickinson, a city of about 19,000, was hit especially hard by Harvey. More than three-quarters of its homes were damaged by the hurricane, and 830 were destroyed.

State Rep. Phil King, the author of the state legislation, said last week that the law, which went into effect on Sept. 1, “in no way applies to the type of situation that happened in Dickinson.”

The ACLU complained that linking aid to an individual’s support of the Israel boycott is a violation of free speech rights.

Author

Ari Feldman

Ari Feldman

Ari Feldman is a staff writer at the Forward. He covers Jewish religious organizations, synagogue life, anti-Semitism and the Orthodox world. If you have any tips, you can email him at feldman@forward.com. Follow him on Twitter @aefeldman.

Texas Town Nixes Israel Boycott Clause On Harvey Form

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Texas Town Deletes Israel Boycott Clause From Hurricane Relief Grants

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close