Minutes (1956-1961, 1966-1969, 1975-1977, y). Canadian Jewish Congress minutes, re UJPO (1962). Correspondence (1964). Publications (1950s, 1960, 1980s). UJPO News (1959-1987 with gaps, e/y). Invitations and programs of plays. Choir photo (reproduction). Clippings (1946-1958, 1965-1967, 1981-1991).
History / Biographical
In 1926, three cities (Montreal among them) formed socialist immigrant organizations after splitting off from the Workmen's Circle. These merged in 1945 to become the United Jewish People's Order of Canada, founding branches throughout the nation. Described as a "secular and pro-socialist fraternal and cultural organization," it established choirs, summer camps, Yiddish elementary schools, cemeteries, credit unions, seniors' clubs, sick benefit funds, drama groups, and various fundraising events. The UJPO runs educational and cultural activities through its centres, conducts itself mainly in Yiddish, commemorates events of the Holocaust, and gives money to "humanitarian causes." UJPO has been involved in both Jewish and Canadian issues such as unions, old age pensions, medicare, the peace movement, the prosecution of Nazi war criminals (in Israel and elsewhere), and the arms race. The UJPO was excluded from the Committee on Yiddish and the Canadian Jewish Congress (for protesting German rearmament), and were padlocked (1950) during the Duplessis era for suspected Communism. It was initially unsuccessful in its bid to be readmitted to Congress in 1979, but was eventually readmitted in 1995.