Women in Black, Union Square began in the fall of 2001 in response to the need to represent a dissenting Jewish voice following the September 11 attacks on New York. In the midst of their grief over that tragedy, four Jewish women saw an immediate need to heighten awareness of alternatives to war, and particularly to bring visibility to Jewish women’s particular vision of a peaceful solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict. Taking the Israeli women’s group, Women in Black, as their model, these women began handing out leaflets at Union Square once a week.

The vigil has grown and now includes women and men, Jews and non-Jews. While we are motivated by Jewish and feminist ethical considerations, we take pride in our ability to stand together across differences that are too often divisive. We have found that they need not be.