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Dear JOCers,

I have long been of the belief that the goal of the Jewish Outdoors Club is not just to bring people together to explore and get lost in the great outdoors, as we like to joke. As a 2000 person Jewish organization, we have the unique opportunity for the more far reaching Tikun Olam -- repairing of the world.

To that end, the 20 person board of the JOC recently discussed and voted to approve a measure to ban from the JOC all men who are withholding a get from their (former) wives.

This was not a knee-jerk decision - it followed much debate, and the details of its implementation have been discussed amongst a subcommittee for over 6 weeks now, as well as with members of JOFA (Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance) and the Organization for the Resolution of Agunot (ORA).

Our objective goes beyond banning people per se -- our hope is that our decision will inspire Jewish leaders and laypersons alike to do their part to ensure that the tragedy of the agunah due to recalcitrant husbands (Mesarev Get) will cease to be a problem in the future.

I hereby present to you the complete ruling, and the details of its implementation:

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I) RULING AND DEFINITIONS

 Any man who is considered to be withholding a get will be removed from the email list of the Jewish Outdoors Club and banned from all JOC events until the get is granted.

A man is considered to be withholding a get if a civil divorce or separation action has been filed more than 12 months ago, and a get has not been given.

(This definition was conceived by Joseph Rackman in a special to the Jewish Week  entitled, Shame Men into Giving a Get (Dec 14, 2006), which largely served as the inspiration for this measure)

II) PROCESS

Any initial claim made to us must be made by the agunah herself in writing that states the basic facts, and provides sufficient evidence. The woman must provide contact information for the Rav from the Beit Din involved, and call that Rav to obtain permission to talk to us about the case.

The man involved will be made aware of the claim by us in writing. He can choose to dispute the claim on the basis of fact only - i.e, evidence that he is not withholding a get.  Any justification for his withholding a get will not be accepted.

III) PRIVACY MATTERS

So as to maintain privacy and discretion, all fact gathering and decisions will be made by the President and Vice President only. No other board member or JOC members will made aware of any such situation.

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For more information on the resolution of the Agunah crisis, http://www.getora.com has many resources, including information on the RCA Prenup.

Sincerely,
Alon Krausz
Founder and President, Jewish Outdoors Club

Read the NJ Jewish Standard article



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