On Monday, June 19th twenty CCVI sisters and one collaborator gathered in The Village with JPIC Office Assistant Director Jennifer Reyes Lay, to hear about her recent trip to Washington DC for Ecumenical Advocacy Days (EAD) and engage in some advocacy of their own. EAD was a gathering of hundreds of faith leaders from many different denominations who came together around common values of promoting a moral budget that protects the common good, does not increase Pentagon spending, and cares for our earth. Jennifer shared with those gathered the highlights of EAD including the “leave behind” list of asks for congressional representatives and senators. There were copies available for the sisters to sign as well and mail in to their representatives and senators. Some sisters shared the letter with other residents of the Village, and over 50 signed letters were collected and sent in to Texas senators and representatives advocating for a moral budget that protects the common good.
Two other advocacy topics that were covered at the gathering were the issue of refugee resettlement in coordination with the World Day of Refugees, and the pending American Health Care Act (AHCA) proposed by the GOP members of the Senate. Participants received a handout with background information on each topic along with a sample script for calling their senators and representatives or writing a letter. There was a lot of lively conversation around the topics of protecting health care, protecting the environment, and supporting immigrants and refugees.
Overall it was a wonderful gathering that reminded everyone of our important responsibility as citizens of the United States and people of faith, to contact our elected representatives and speak up on behalf of the most vulnerable in our communities to ensure that their human dignity and rights are protected and respected.