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Justice Alerts Blog

Nonviolence... Human trafficking... Women... The elderly... Immigrants' rights... Housing... Children... Prisoners' rights... Health care... World Hunger... Globalization, as it affects Latin America... Care of the earth... Seamless ethic of life


The mission of the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation ministry is to explore CSA's distinct contribution to the ongoing, nonviolent transformation of the world towards peace, justice and ecology. This work embraces the efforts of sisters, associates, co-workers and others who share the CSA vision. We live out the mission to bring about systemic change by using the lens of nonviolence to focus on the issues of women, children, health care, globalization (especially as it affects Latin America), seamless ethic of life.

Note: The ideas and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author's and should not be ascribed to the Congregation of Sisters of St. Agnes or its members.


 

Resources (August 13)

August 13, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

Season of Creation Header Image

Each year from September 1 to October 4, the Christian family unites for this worldwide celebration of prayer and action to protect our common home. We share a common role as caretakers of God's creation and we see that our well-being is interwoven with its well-being. This year, the theme for the season is "Jubilee for Earth." It will consider the integral relationship between rest for the Earth and ecological, economic, social, and political ways of living. There are three events that tie it all together: September 1 is Creation Day, also called World Day of Prayer for Creation. International Coastal Cleanup Day is September 21 and the season concludes with the feast of St. Francis of Assisi on October 4. During this time look for regular postings on caring for Earth in our regular Justice Alerts.

Census

Last week the U.S. Census Bureau announced it would be ending census operations on September 30, 2020. COVID-19 has caused significant delays and disruptions to census operations which is why the Bureau has requested the extended household counting operations through October 31, 2020.
Shortening the timeline to collect data and rush operations during a national pandemic is likely to leave a large number undocumented immigrants and poor people uncounted, skewing Congressional representation, redistricting, and critical funding allotments for every state in the country.
  
But Congress can act to protect the census by ensuring that in the next stimulus package, provisions that the Bureau requested to extend the data delivery deadlines and deliver necessary funding to complete counting activities is included in the legislation. Contact your Congressional leaders. 
    

Ending Human Trafficking

One of the many negative effects of COVID - 19 is the rise of sex trafficking online. An interactive discussion addressing this topic is being held on August 19, 2020 from 10-11 am, CDT. You can register by clicking here. 

Capital Punishment

There are two executions scheduled for later this month. Lezmond is Navajo and the Navajo Nation is opposed to his execution. You can take action to oppose his execution and that of Keith Dwayne Nelson through Catholic Mobilizing Network's web page. Scroll down a short way to find the names of these two men to send a letter.

Peaceful and Just Elections

Interfaith Power and Light offers "In the 2020 Election We're All in this Together", a nonpartisan guide that addresses urgent moral issues at stake in this election and beyond.  Topics include justice for immigrants, economic dignity, care for creation and climate change, racism and criminal justice reform, democracy and voting rights, health care and the coronavirus pandemic, and global peace building. You can download it here  

Immigration

Call Your 2 Senators to urge permanent protections for DACA & TPS recipients as a part of the COVID-19 relief package -- if and when Congress provides one. Call your  Senators at the Capitol switchboard, (202) 224-3121.   

Maryknoll Office of Global Concerns is holding a webinar entitled "Justice for Immigrants in U.S. Policy," on Tuesday, August 18  from 12:30-1:00 pm EDT. Click here to register.

Kathleen Kollman Birch, Communications Manager, will speak on United States' broken immigration system, the Church's position on U.S. immigration policy, and the ways U.S. voters can call upon electoral candidates to promote justice for immigrants through comprehensive immigration reform.  

Peace, 
Sister Ruth Battaglia CSA

Pray for Peaceful & Just Elections

August 11, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

We The People

We invite you share in a simple five minutes of individual contemplative silence at whatever time you choose each Tuesday leading up to election day.

Want to take another action for peaceful and just elections? Each week, we’ll provide an action item - some will be much easier to do than others - participate in the actions as you are able.

We Pray

“Let each citizen remember at the moment [one] is offering [one’s] vote that he [or she] is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual--or at least that he [or she] ought not so to do; but that he [or she] is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which [one] is accountable to God and [one’s] country.”

—Samuel Adams

We Act

Share Your State Election Website on Social Media

… or send it to at least 10 friends via email. Each state has an official website with state-wide voting guidance. You can use it to see your upcoming ballot, check your registration, or request an absentee ballot. Use this link to find your state's official page and then share it with others! https://www.usa.gov/election-office.

Resources (August 6)

August 06, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

As I write this Congress has still not agreed on funding another package to address the effects of the pandemic. Continue to contact your senators with your concerns. 

Care of the Earth

 

75th Anniversary of Nuclear Bombings

Since the United States detonated two nuclear weapons over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 75 years ago on August 6 and 9 respectively, there has been a proliferation of nuclear weapons capable of destroying civilization as we know it. The world's 9 nuclear-armed states posses a combined total of nearly 14,000 nuclear warheads; more than 90% belonging to Russia and the United States The power to bring about the unthinkable destruction of Earth and its inhabitants lies in the hands of two people, the leaders of Russia and the United States.Think about that.

Consider taking part in these actions to rid the world of nuclear weapons that threaten our Earth home: 

 

Undoing Racism

As our nation wrestles with the historic, systemic, and pervasive truths of racism, we cannot turn away. We must face our failings, both personal and communal, and weed out racism at its roots. Ignatian Solidarity Network offers this resource for entering into the complex work of understanding the realities of racial injustice and anti-Blackness in the U.S. by learning, praying, and taking action for racial equity.  21-Day Ignatian Racial Equity Challenge

Ending Human Trafficking

Stop Trafficking Newsletter is available for downloading. Looking Back on Twenty Years of the Trafficking In Persons Report 

Capital Punishment

The administration is ignoring the law, ignoring compelling issues which demand executive clemency, ignoring the danger of executing during the pandemic, and even ignoring the families of victims in several cases who adamantly oppose the execution of the person convicted of killing their loved ones. There is evidence that he federal death penalty is being used as a political tool to reelect the president. Death Penalty Action has a revised petition for resigning.   Sign Here  

Immigration/DACA

Last week, the Trump Administration released a memo that undermines the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and continues the attacks on Dreamers and undocumented young people. The announcement sidesteps last month’s U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision, which ruled that the Trump administration did not provide adequate justification to rescind DACA in 2017.
  
Call your Senators at the Capitol Switchboard, (202) 224-3121 using this sample script:
 
“Hello, my name is _________, [I’m a Catholic sister and] your constituent. I’m calling today to ask [Representative/Senator NAME] to support Dreamers by rejecting President Trump’s termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. DACA recipients are on the frontlines of the Coronavirus pandemic in our hospitals and as essential workers. Now more than ever, Congress has a moral obligation to pass the Dream and Promise Act to provide permanent protections and solutions for all young immigrants without expanding detention, deportation and border militarization that further harm immigrant communities. Please do all you can to support and protect them. Thank you for your time and attention. Peace and all good.”

Peace, 
Sister Ruth Battaglia CSA

920-907-2315

CALL NOW!

August 04, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

Everyone needs access to food, water, power, and broadband. 

 
We need to show the House and the Senate that everyone having access to water, power, and broadband must be a priority. Please spread the word: Here is the activist toolkit – linked in it are draft emails to send, draft social media posts, all of the call in numbers and scripts, as well as a sample cosponsor request email for Senator Merkley’s utility shutoff bills.
 
Also, the Senate's original bill, cuts unemployment benefits to $200, provides no money for SNAP food benefits or for protecting the upcoming elections. Call or email your Senators today.

It’s the final push: the Senate intends to pass the next stimulus bill by this Friday, August 7th. We need to ensure that they prioritize ensuring that everyone has access to food, vital utilities, and protection of the right to vote.

Pray for Peaceful & Just Elections

August 04, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

We The People

We invite you share in a simple five minutes of individual contemplative silence at whatever time you choose each Tuesday leading up to election day.

Want to take another action for peaceful and just elections? Each week, we’ll provide an action item - some will be much easier to do than others - participate in the actions as you are able.

We Pray

“Provide wise, discerning, and reputable persons for each of your tribes, that I may appoint them as your leaders.” ”
—Deuteronomy 1:13&

We Act

Research Candidates

Don’t assume a candidate “in your party” supports your stances. www.ballotready.org provides an easy way to see the candidates in your next election and provides links to their official social media sites, websites, and any key endorsements they have received to make your research easier.

Election Justice Information and Action

August 03, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

With fewer than 100 days left until the November 3 elections, NOW is the time to act so that you will be able to vote safely and easily.  For Wisconsin voters there is a primary election on August 11. The application deadline for an absentee ballot is August 6.

DO:

  • Register to vote at your City Clerk's office or online at My Vote (State).
  • My Vote will also allow you to request a mail-in ballot (It is easy in Wisconsin. Some states ask for a reason). The ballot may arrive within a short time, but the deadline for its return is voting day itself. Allow for at least a two week turnaround. 
  • Mail your ballot, take it to the polls, or drop it off at places designated by your state.
  • Make sure that you have followed the directions carefully so that your ballot is valid. 
  • Two other options:
    • Check your municipality for early voting times and places. 
    • Go to the polls on election day. Have your voter ID.  Be prepared to wait. Wear a mask. Keep a safe distance from other people.
  • Encourage voting among family, friends and neighbors. Use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. to convey your message. 

DO NOT:

  • Wait until the last minute.  Early efforts will minimize the possibility of the Post Office or your city clerk's office becoming overwhelmed and ballots remaining uncounted.
  • Ignore primary elections and down ballot candidates. The people who hold state and local positions actually have the greatest impact on your everyday life. On My Vote you can see what will appear on your ballot. Go to the candidate's campaign web page to read the information posted by the candidate her or himself and Google their name for additional information and opinions.
  • Decide that you already know who is going to win and fail to vote. Every voice is important. The polls and predictions have been wrong.  A very close election or a landslide carries a message of its own to those elected, those not elected, and to the voters.

The last thing we need is an election crisis, with contested results, recounts, court cases, and further division within our nation. As people of faith we can use our right to vote for the greater good, to further social justice. Let's do our part to make the November election safe and fair. 

Sister Ruth Battaglia CSA
929 907 2315


 

Memo From God

July 30, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

When the crises loom large and the work for justice appears in vain, I read this Memo from God. "Do not feel totally personally irrevocably responsible for everything. That's my job. All my love. God."  What I am responsible for is being the hands, and feet and voice of God where I am. As John Lewis is laid to rest today commit to getting into "good trouble."

Ending Human Trafficking

Today is World Day Against Human Trafficking. Polaris states that the number of crisis trafficking cases handled by the Trafficking Hotline increased by more than 40 percent in the month following the shelter-in-place orders compared to the prior month (from approximately 60 in a 30 day period to 90).  

Capital Punishment

FOUR more federal execution dates may be announced as soon as tomorrow. More than 20 federal death row prisoners are at or near the end of their appeals.

It appears that the federal death penalty is being used as a political tool by the Trump Administration and the campaign to re-elect Donald Trump. For this reason, Death Penalty Action is instead petitioning congress. Consider the new language. Click to add your name to endorse this new language.

DACA Update

On Tuesday, the Trump administration released a new memorandum directing senior officials of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to make significant changes to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  The new memo means that:

  • USCIS will reject all first time applications for DACA. 
  • USCIS will reject advance parole requests except in “exceptional circumstances.”
  • All pending DACA renewals are limited to one year grants, instead of the previous two years.  

  Call on Congress to

  • Pass permanent protections that help without hurting people;
  • Include HEROES Act provisions to auto-extend Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) for DACA & TPS holders in the next COVID relief package;
  • Defund ICE and CBP
  • DACA recipients to apply for funds from the DACA Renewal Fund
  • DACA allies to donate to the DACA Renewal Fund
  •  State and local leaders to
    • Divest from the deportation force and police
    • Invest in immigrant communities

Take action send an email to your senator demanding they pass the Dream & Promise Act and defund ICE and CBP. Urge the Senate to pass a solution that helps Dreamers without hurting our other immigrant community.  SEND EMAIL to your Senator.

Sister Ruth Battaglia CSA
920 907 2315

The Senate's Supplemental Relief Package

July 28, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

Justice Alerts may be coming more frequently during this time when Congress is in session. Now is a crucial time to let them know where you stand. Senate Republicans released their proposal for the next COVID-19 supplemental relief package. It is not enough and must be challenged. 

 

Call Your Senators NOW: 888-496-3502
Tell them to protect people with this COVID-19 legislation!

 

Call twice to reach both of your Senators.
When you call, here's what you might say:

"Hello, my name is [NAME] and I'm a constituent from [TOWN]. I'm calling to ask the Senator to advocate for provisions that support families in the next Senate COVID-19 response package. Specifically, this legislation should extend the pandemic Unemployment Insurance benefit, extend expired housing protections, and increase Medicaid funding for state and local governments to pay the rising costs of health care during this pandemic.

As a person of faith, I believe every person in our country should have what they need to get by during this pandemic. Right now the Senate plan fails to meet the needs of families on the brink of eviction, families that have depleted their savings, and state and local governments struggling to pay the cost of health care. Please amend this plan to give more support people and families during his crisis."

A Comprehensive Bill would include:

  • Additional federal aid to states, cities, and towns to avoid layoffs and cuts to education, health and other vital services for those most in need;
  • Access to benefits for immigrants and their families;
  • An increase food assistance through SNAP;
  • Help for millions behind in their rent or mortgage payments to avoid evictions and homelessness;
  • Extended, expanded federal unemployment benefits for those who lost their jobs;
  • A temporary increase in the Earned Income Tax Credits and Child Tax Credits to boost incomes of struggling workers and families;
  • Expanded access to health coverage and funding to meet public health needs;
  • Relief funding for child care so providers can open safely;
  • Additional funding to ensure a successful  2020 Census operation and for safe, fair elections;
  • Generous foreign aid assistance to help developing countries deal with the pandemic.

Pray for Peaceful & Just Elections

July 28, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

We The People

We invite you share in a simple five minutes of individual contemplative silence at whatever time you choose each Tuesday leading up to election day.

Want to take another action for peaceful and just elections? Each week, we’ll provide an action item - some will be much easier to do than others - participate in the actions as you are able.

We Pray

“Democracy is not a spectator sport.”
— Marian Wright Edelman

We Act

Call a Friend

Check with at least one friend and help them verify that they are registered to vote. If they’re not, help them get registered! You can register on election day, but it will add to your wait time, so registering in advance with your local clerk is helpful. In Wisconsin, search for your municipal clerk here: https://myvote.wi.gov/en-US/MyMunicipalClerk

NEVER AGAIN!

July 27, 2020
By Sister Ruth Battaglia, CSA

2020 Marks the 75th Anniversary of
Bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
 

The following comes from the Leadership Conference of Women Religious. I have included it in its entirety. Among all of the other crisis the world is facing the threat of nuclear annihilation holds the severest consequences. 


#stillhereDuring his visit to Nagasaki and Hiroshima last November, Pope Francis made an impassioned appeal for the total elimination of nuclear arms, “In a world where millions of children and families live in inhumane conditions, the money that is squandered and the fortunes made through the manufacture, upgrading, maintenance and sale of ever more destructive weapons, are an affront crying out to heaven.” 

This August marks seventy-five years since the United States conducted nuclear attacks against the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, devastating their populations and destroying their infrastructure. Following their use in Japan, the production and testing of nuclear weapons in the United States and internationally continues to harm the health, environment, and cultures of communities around the world.
 
In this time of pandemic, people have come to realize more fully the deep interconnections and mutual dependence of life on Earth. Many are beginning to rethink national security and questions national priorities.  

Today, nine countries still possess nearly 14,000 nuclear weapons, enough to end all life on the planet many times over.  Unlike the coronavirus, maintaining and expanding international nuclear arsenals, and the threats they pose to the world, are a choice nuclear-armed countries make. 

While it is fitting to mourn the lives lost to COVID-19, this anniversary also invites people around the world to stand with the hibakusha, the survivors of the bombings in Japan, and other communities harmed by nuclear weapons.
 
This 75th anniversary is an opportunity to come together, to reflect, and to push for a more just world that values peace and the safety of all people.

LCWR has joined #stillhere, a coalition of anti-nuclear organizations who share a common goal of ridding the world of nuclear weapons and standing with the hibakusha.

  • Read the coalition’s position statement.
  • Sign and share the hibakusha appeal with your networks.
  • Find resources and learn how to get involved HERE.
  • Plan to attend the national virtual event on Thursday, August 6 and Sunday, August 9.
  • Reach out to your local media to promote the national event, prepare a press release for a local event, or write an LTE. You can find a wealth of resources and examples in this Media Outreach Packet.  

 We also invite you to join The Peace Ribbon campaign. It is yet another way to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and to raise awareness of the imminent threat of nuclear weapons. Pax Christi USA has taken a lead on this project as its contribution to the ongoing effort begun by Justine Merritt and carried forth by The Ribbon International that seeks to keep Justine's vision of a nuclear free world alive.

  • Make a ribbon panel — either by cloth or on poster board — sewing, painting or drawing to capture “what I cannot bear to think of as lost forever in a nuclear war.”
  • Display your ribbon panels in windows, on porch railings, at community centers or places of worship as a way of commemorating this 75th anniversary and pledging to work for a world that will never know such destruction again. Take photos of your panels and share them with PCUSA. (Photos can be sent to dortiz@paxchristiusa.org.)
  • Share this very short video that describes The Real Cost of Nuclear Weapons from Pax Christi International.

 
Peace, 
Sister Ruth Battaglia CSA

920-907-2315

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