The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America (more commonly referred to as the Orthodox Union, or OU) is the largest coalition of Orthodox synagogues in the United States. In addition to its network of congregations, the organization supports youth services, Zionist advocacy, and international units, along with a large Kosher certification service.
Working with Christians United for Israel (CUFI), OU engages with anti-ESG activity by criticizing how ESG rating systems impact businesses affiliated with Israel—largely due to the country’s ongoing violation of international humanitarian law. OU has been involved in a number of high-profile cases in which it successfully argued that the investment research firm Morningstar violated state laws by negatively rating businesses that engage with Israel. In 2022, 18 attorneys general joined a Missouri-led investigation into whether Morningstar’s ESG “ratings unit violated a Missouri law aimed at protecting Israel from a campaign to isolate the Jewish state over its treatment of Palestinians,” though no findings have yet been made public in the investigation.
In March 2023, OU and CUFI sent a joint letter to the State Financial Officers Foundation (SFOF) thanking its members for “working to thwart companies seeking to use Americans’ retirement savings to advance anti-Israel positions.”
OU is registered as a church with the IRS, meaning it is not required to disclose its finances.