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Ethics Policies

Ethics Policies and Processes for Congregation Kol Ami KC

PURPOSE:  This policy is intended to enhance and protect our synagogue’s radical inclusion mission and values including:

Inclusion

We welcome everyone interested in exploring Judaism – all ages, ethnicities, genders, and orientations; Jews by birth and by choice; singles, couples, and families, including interfaith relationships.

Continuity

We are keepers of a sacred trust, which each generation renews as it passes it on to the next. We explore and experiment, but always rest on the foundation of our shared Jewish tradition: one tree of life, with many ways.

Music

Song and instrument are at the heart of our spiritual and ritual expression. Our focus on congregational singing empowers everyone to share music as a pathway to Jewish worship, and we encourage and nurture the talents of our musicians and singers with opportunities for participation.

Social Engagement

We seek to repair the broken places in ourselves, each other and our neighbors, and bridge the gap between communities in Kansas City.

Presence

We are anchored in the central city and reach out from here to foster a community of people across the metropolitan area, committed to the health of the urban core and to the idea that Jews should be part of it.

Action

Jewish tradition tells us that Torah is not only to be studied but also to be lived. We steadfastly walk our talk, so that the power of words and the power in deeds stay aligned and feed each other.

SCOPE & CONTENT: This policy sets forth principles and expectations for standards of conduct for clergy, congregants, staff, visitors, and guests while  participating in any formal or informal Congregation Kol Ami activity or program held on site, in a home, online, or offsite.

Our affirmative ethics expectations are as follows:
We promote honest communication allowing for constructively addressing differences. 
We respect and protect intellectual property rights and we obey copyright laws.
We are transparent, open, and accountable for decisions regarding synagogue-related matters unless confidentiality dictates discretion.
We act on behalf of the synagogue’s best interests.
We act with integrity by honoring our obligations to the Kol Ami community as members, officers, and staff.  These include financial arrangements and programing action commitments
Everyone entering or participating in our community has the right to feel safe and respected.  We strive to protect that right and to defend it vigorously in the event it is challenged.

We do not tolerate any of the following ethical abuses: (These are illustrative and not meant to be an exhaustive list;  any allegations of ethical abuse will be considered in the process outlined below)
Derogatory speech, slander whether in person or on social media;
Bullying including any unwanted behavior that degrades, humiliates, or oppresses another;
Racist, homophobic/transphobic or misogynistic language;
Sexual harassment of any kind including unwelcome sexual advances, verbal, physical, written or visual conduct of a sexual nature.

POLICY APPLICATION: Process for Addressing Allegations of Unethical Behavior
The Board President will appoint an additional member to serve with them and the Rabbi as a 3-person Ethics Committee.

1. Reporting the allegation: Any member of the synagogue community who witnesses or experiences unethical behavior should report it to the Rabbi or President.   Reports can be made verbally or in writing.

2. Investigation: The committee will investigate the allegation promptly and confidentially. This may involve interviewing the person who made the allegation, the person who is the subject of the allegation, and any other witnesses.

3. Findings: Once the investigation is complete, the Committee will make a determination about whether or not the allegation is substantiated. If the allegation is substantiated, the Committee will determine the appropriate disciplinary action.

4. Disciplinary action: Disciplinary action may range from a verbal warning to expulsion from the synagogue community. The type of disciplinary action will depend on the nature of the unethical behavior and the person's history,  relationship and context within the Kol Ami community.

5. Appeals: If the person who is the subject of the disciplinary action disagrees with the decision, they may appeal to the synagogue's board of directors. The board of directors will review the case and make a final decision.

Tue, April 23 2024 15 Nisan 5784