The Pledge was launched on November 1st, 2015 at the New Jersey State Museum, in Trenton, NJ. and the second annual rally was held on Nov 1, 2016 at the Douglas Student Center in partnership with New Rutgers University, Brunswick.
On December 19, 2016, we achieved an historic milestone when the entire New Jersey Legislature endorsed the Pledge.
All New Jersey State Senators took the Pledge on Monday, December 19, 2016 at the State House in Trenton. See below links to videos from this historic event.
Here is a link to the NJ State Senators taking the pledge led by Senators Lesniak and Greenstein along with the creator of the Pledge, Dr. Ali Chaudry.
Here is a link to the comments regarding the pledge on the floor of the NJ Assembly on Monday, December 19, 2016. You can find the Assembly session's reference to the pledge at
Click on Dec. 19 and then"View" (to the right). Speaker Prieto, Assemblyman Zwicker and Assemblyman Bramnick speak from the 7:32 minute mark to 10:25.
Media Release December 19, 2016
Dr. Ali Chaudry, Islamic Society of Basking Ridge,
firstname.lastname@example.org (908) 672-1798
Jacob Toporek, New Jersey State Assn. of Jewish Federations,
email@example.com (908) 889-1880
STATE LEGISLATORS JOIN FAITH GROUPS IN URGING ALL NEW JERSEYANS TO PLEDGE TO STAND UP FOR EACH OTHER
(December 19, 2016, Trenton) Building on momentum set in motion by students at Rutgers University last month, today members of the State Senate and State Assembly took the “Stand Up for the Other” pledge to not be indifferent to expressions of bigotry. In this way, the legislators echoed the sentiments shared by faith-based organizers “If any of our communities are under attack, we will stand up for each other.”
The Pledge, sponsored by the New Jersey Interfaith Coalition, was modified for 2016 to include gender bias and reads: “While interacting with members of my own faith, ethnic or gender community, or with others, if I hear hateful comments from anyone about members of any other community, I pledge to stand up for the other and challenge bigotry in any form.”
The New Jersey Interfaith Coalition (www.njifc.org) developed the “Stand Up for the Other” pledge in response to efforts of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding (FFEU) to bring faith groups together during its Season of Twinning. Its mission is to foster a climate of positive mutual acceptance and appreciation for others regardless of differences in faith, race, or sexual orientation.
The second annual “Stand Up for the Other” rally was convened at the Rutgers University New Brunswick campus on November 1, 2016 by a variety of faith groups and student-run organizations, and which featured New Jersey Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino as keynote speaker. Similarly, on November 1, 2015, the faith community inaugurated this annual rite, with a gathering at the State House Museum in Trenton.
Senators Raymond Lesniak and Linda Greenstein who took part in the two November Stand Up rallies, and Senator Kip Bateman, had the idea to bring this pledge to the New Jersey Senate.
“Stand Up for the Other brings us together as One New Jersey and as One America. Our diversity is what defines us as Americans and is part of our strength as citizens of New Jersey, which is the most diverse state in the country. We need to stand up for what is right and be willing to stand with others who are doing the right thing,” said Senator Lesniak.
Senator Linda Greenstein (LD-14) added, “Now more than ever, we must stand together against hate and bigotry. As elected officials, we should lead the effort. I was pleased to take this pledge with my colleagues who, in one voice, committed to challenging bigotry in any form. I urge people of good will to join this effort and to commit in the strongest terms possible to the principles of tolerance and mutual respect and understanding.”
Senator Bateman said, “The Rutgers event gave me great hope for the future to see our young people come together to take a proactive stance against bigotry and discrimination. And I’m proud to do the same, standing with my colleagues today.”
Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker (D-16), who took the pledge in January this year during a Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial ceremony, worked closely with organizers on bringing the idea to the State Assembly. He said, "Today is an historical day, the entire NJ legislature has stood up together to say that we will speak up to challenge bigotry in all its forms. As the author of an anti-bigotry resolution that passed the Assembly unanimously this summer, I am proud to stand with all of my colleagues in both houses and both parties in support of respect and equality for all New Jersey residents."
Republican Leader Bramnick stated, “Today we legislators take another solemn oath to be people who stand up for one another. This kind of public act will serve as a reminder to be our best selves when called upon to speak up.”
Assemblyman Gary Schaer, the only Orthodox Jewish member of the State legislature, added, “It is up to every individual to challenge bigotry and help create a more inclusive society. By endorsing the Pledge to Stand up for the Other, we are sending a clear message: We are stronger as a community because of our differences, not despite of them.”
Today’s event was convened by the NJ Interfaith Coalition, along with NJ State Association of Jewish Federations, Islamic Society of Basking Ridge, Jewish Catholic Muslim Dialogue of Southern New Jersey and Foundation for Ethnic Understanding.
Dr. Ali Chaudry, creator of the Pledge to Stand Up for the Other, Co-Founder of the NJ Interfaith Coalition and the NJ Muslim Jewish Solidarity Committee, and President of the Islamic Society of Basking Ridge, said, “I am deeply grateful to all New Jersey State Senators and Assembly members for taking the Pledge to Stand Up for the Other. They have set a great example of how we can all come together to wipe out bigotry and hatred from our society.”
Jacob Toporek, Executive Director, NJ State Association of Jewish Federations, added, “Having all 120 members of the NJ Legislature stand with us and take a personal pledge to ‘stand up for the other’ is a significant, meaningful, inspirational and, certainly, a bold message to all of our citizens that mutual respect and tolerance are the most preferred values. We should remain vigilant and take every opportunity to speak out against hatred.”
The November 1st Rally served to kick off the 2016 International Muslim-Jewish Season of Twinning, promoted every November/December by the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding (FFEU), during which Muslims, Jews and interfaith allies in more than 25 countries worldwide hold events celebrating commonalities and vowing to stand up for each other if any community is demonized or victimized by hate crimes or discrimination.
Walter Ruby, Muslim-Jewish Programs Director for FFEU, highlighted the urgency following a divisive election season and was hopeful for next steps, “FFEU is delighted for the New Jersey legislature’s commitment to modeling the good citizenship we wish to see by all by taking the Pledge.”
Other Media Links.
Here is a link to the story in The Daily Targum, the Rutgers Student newspaper.
Media Advisory on the second annual rally to stand up for the other.