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Reform Union Cuts Outreach Staff

Citing a $2 million budget deficit, the Reform movement’s synagogue body is eliminating the positions of its 13 regional outreach coordinators, the staffers charged with making Reform congregations welcoming to interfaith families.

The Union of American Hebrew Congregations must eliminate more than 30 positions to make up the shortfall, which represents about 10% of its budget and was caused by a drop in endowment income, said UAHC spokeswoman Emily Grotta. The outreach functions will be consolidated at the union’s New York headquarters, Grotta said.

“When outreach began, no congregation was welcoming to interfaith families, but at this time, there’s practically no congregation not practicing outreach as part of their beliefs,” Grotta said. “A lot of what it does has been accomplished. Other areas need more help at this point.”

“Obviously this has been a painful process,” she added.

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