Statement of Agudath Israel of America Regarding New York State Constitutional Convention
On Election Day, November 7, 2017, New Yorkers will be asked to vote on a proposed Constitutional Convention. Agudath Israel of America urges its constituents to vote “NO”.
It is not in our community’s interest to have a Constitutional Convention, which would open up New York State’s Constitution to major changes. We are deeply concerned that a Constitutional Convention could seriously jeopardize many of the existing protections that exist in the current State Constitution, and make major changes in state law that could adversely affect our community. To give just a few examples:
- A Constitutional Convention could lead to reducing, or even ending, the ability of the state to provide significant assistance and services to nonpublic schools, including religious schools. It could also end funding for other religious institutions such as shuls, even for such basic issues as security protection.
- A Constitutional Convention could lead to the legalization of physician-assisted suicide and other end of life policies that are contrary to halacha.
- A Constitutional Convention could lead to a further decline in the moral climate in which we live, as many “progressives” are advocating.
We therefore urge all caring, thinking people to vote “no” on November 7, 2017 on the question of whether New York should have a Constitutional Convention.