Turns out I have solved my immediate problem with the Craftforge JQL functions plugin: https://plugins.atlassian.com/plugin/details/31601
A nice person at Atlassian support pointed me here:
Hi George, you could use the JQL tricks plugin: https://marketplace.atlassian.com/plugins/com.j-tricks.jql-plugin
Sadly it's not free, but it has exactly what you need:
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