UU Justice Action (JustAct) News
October 2011 Issue: Faithful Budget, Faithful Witness - Make A Call!
Life is difficult. This is the opening sentence of M. Scott Peck’s insightful book, The Road Less Traveled.
But life is even more difficult when you’re poor. The U.S. poverty rate is at a 45-year high and one in eight people live in poverty.
A Congressional “Super Committee” has been tasked with cutting at least $1.2 trillion from the federal budget by November 23. These cuts could affect every federal program under the sun: Social Security, Medicare, nutrition assistance programs, prenatal and infant care, foreign aid, the military, taxes and more. Vital lifelines such as the Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC), Head Start, low-income housing, and other initiatives serving vulnerable families are at risk.
Faith communities across the country have come together to ask Congress for a just and compassionate federal budget -- a “Faithful Budget.” Our President, Rev. Peter Morales, has added his voice to a “Heads of Communion” letter to the Super Committee.
Today, I will be at the first of a series of weekly prayer vigils at the Methodist Building on Capitol Hill calling for a “Faithful Budget” outcome to the Deficit negotiations underway. Please join me and call your Senator or Congressional Representative today or tomorrow, October 4-5, and ask for a Faithful Budget that preserves the dignity and protects the well-being of the most vulnerable.
--Rev. Craig Roshaven, Witness Ministries Director, UUA Multicultural Growth & Witness
Resources: See “Unemployment as a Spiritual Issue” by Rev. Peter Morales and our UUA Web Pages on Economic Justice.
Best Practice: The UUA, UU State Networks, and UU congregations, in coalition with our partners, are advocating with members of the Congressional “Super Committee” for a 'Faithful Budget'. Special efforts are underway in the key states of FL, MA, MD, and MI. Randy Block, Network Manager of the Michigan UU Social Justice Network, was in Washington DC recently to meet with coalition partners. To contact your UU State Network, see http://uustatenetworks.org/. [Note: As we go to press, we are hearing from UUs across the country who are joining the Occupy Wall Street protests!]
Also in this issue:
October Congregational Justice Bulletin which features information and resources for congregations that may want to participate in:
- Faithful Advocates for Jobs Campaign
- Indigenous Peoples Day – October 10
- Food Days – October 16 & 24
- DREAM Sabbath -- October
- Transgender Day of Remembrance – November 20
- Recorded Webinar with Powerpoint Slides for Congregational Leaders on Immigration
Coming Up! Let us All Join Hands and Stop the Pipeline -- November 6
A pipeline to transport oil extracted from the Tar Sands of Alberta, Canada to Port Arthur, Texas has been proposed. We are asking President Obama to veto its construction.
The proposed Keystone XL pipeline poses a substantial threat to our supply of fresh water and the human rights of the people who live near and downstream from the Tar Sands production sites; it also ignores the dangerous effects of global warming that proceed from increased fossil fuel usage.
As people of faith, we are called to be responsible stewards of our planet and its fragile web of life. As people of faith, we share a commitment to justice for all people, especially people who have historically been oppressed and marginalized.
Come to Washington, DC on Sunday, November 6, and join hands with thousands of others as we encircle the White House with a chain of people standing together to implore the President to stop the pipeline.
To learn more and to register for the event, go to http://goo.gl/ze1jI.
Rev. Craig Roshaven will be at a State Dept. hearing on the proposed Keystone XL pipeline on Friday.
As always, please let us know what your congregation is doing. We can help you with your programs and we would love to feature your best practices!
Susan, Audra, Kat, Dan, Taquiena, and Craig
See www.uua.org/justice for resources, campaign stories, and more!