Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Yeshiva University Creates New LGBTQ Student Group Amid Litigation

Yeshiva University, which is embroiled in litigation over whether it must recognize an LGBTQ student group, YU Pride Alliance, yesterday announced that it has approved a new club for undergraduate LGBTQ students "that presents an approved traditional Orthodox alternative to YU Pride Alliance." Known as Kol Yisrael Areivim Club, the new organization is described by the University:

This newly founded undergraduate student club, which emerges from Yeshiva’s principles and its students’ interest for a club under traditional Orthodox auspices, was approved by the Administration, in partnership with lay leadership, and endorsed by senior Roshei Yeshiva. It also reflects input and perspectives from conversations between Yeshiva’s rabbis, educators, and current and past undergraduate LGBTQ students. The club will provide students with space to grow in their personal journeys, navigating the formidable challenges that they face in living a fully committed, uncompromisingly authentic halachic life within Orthodox communities. Within this association students may gather, share their experiences, host events, and support one another while benefiting from the full resources of the Yeshiva community – all within the framework of Halacha – as all other student clubs.

The University said it also wants to strengthen its support systems for LGBTQ students. 

YU Pride Alliance issued a response to the University's announcement, calling it a "desperate stunt" by the University, saying in part:

The YU sham is not a club as it was not formed by students, is not led by students, and does not have members; rather it is a feeble attempt by YU to continue denying LGBTQ students equal treatment as full members of the YU community.

Both sides say the current litigation will continue. The Forward reports on these developments.