Dear UU Advocates for Justice,
In terms of our UU values, we’ve won a few victories in Illinois so far this year – notably the FATE restorative justice bill – while several other efforts await the Governor’s signature. Of course, the biggest decisions yet to come are the upcoming elections. The UUA, the Poor People’s Campaign, UUANI and many others are all focusing in this direction.
I’d like to challenge each UU in Illinois to proactively affirm and promote our 5th Principle – the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process – by taking the UUANI Voting Our Values pledge and encouraging others to do the same, with the goal of 100% participation.
- Take the Voting Our Values pledge.
- Join us at 7:30pm on Wednesday, September 5 for a Voting Our Values webinar/conference call with UU leaders around the state who are engaging voters in their congregations and communities.
Every vote in every district counts, especially in the race for Governor, and there are numerous other contested races around the state. Here are some ways you can participate in the UUANI Voting Our Values campaign:
- Collect Voting Our Values pledges (online or on paper) after Sunday services starting the first week in September, when it will be the UUANI Action of the Week.
- Reach out to youth and young adults in your congregation and in your community, especially those who are just turning 18 or at college. Contact YaYAJustice@uuani.org to connect with other UU youth and young adults.
- Offer online voter registration after Sunday services, and/or partner with share-the-plate recipient organizations to offer voter registration at an upcoming event, especially around Sept 25 National Voter Registration Day.
- Visit your neighbors in the blocks surrounding your building and/or invite them to a community conversation about what matters to them in the upcoming elections.
- Link up with an organized effort in your community to engage voters through door-knocking, phone banking, postcards, etc. Reply to this email for suggestions.
- Share the non-partisan League of Women Voters voter guide (which will be the UUANI Action of the Week Oct 2).
- Arrange a “Souls to the Polls” caravan to an early voting location between Sept 27 and Nov 5, and offer rides or absentee ballots to those who may have difficulty voting.
Remember, this is not just about candidates – it’s about our UU values.
Listen, Lead, Share for environmental justice
Our other major focus currently is the Listen, Lead, Share campaign of the Illinois Climate Table. The plan is to have community conversations in each state Senate district to generate input and support for a transition to 100% renewable energy that works for everyone. UUs have been involved in sessions in Bloomington and Alton, with many more to come (see below).
- August-November: Volunteer with registration and voting at Cook County Jail.
- Sunday, August 19 from 1-3pm: IL Jobs with Justice WAVE (Western [Suburban] Alliance for Voter Education) Organizing Meeting at DuPage UU Church.
- Monday August 20: Listen, Lead, Share community dialogs on clean energy policy in Murphysboro and Alton.
- Thursday August 23 from 3:00-4:30pm: DuPage Listen, Lead, Share Community Dialog on clean energy policy at Downers Grove Public Library (1050 Curtiss St).
- Saturday August 25, Tuesday September 11 & Tuesday October 9: UUA/Second Chances Coalition phone banking to restore voting rights to 1.4 million citizens returning from felony incarceration. The Florida Voting Restoration Amendment has been called “the most significant voting rights campaign since the 1965 Voting Rights Act.”
- Sunday August 26 from 12-4pm: The People’s Agenda Quad Day Voter Registration at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.
- Saturdays September 1 & 8 from 1-3pm: Voter engagement door knocking with Faith Coalition for the Common Good in Springfield.
- Week of September 4: UUANI Action of the Week – Voting Our Values pledge.
- Wednesday September 5 at 7:30pm: UUANI Voting Our Values webinar.
- Saturday September 8: Rise for Climate, Jobs & Justice actions in Carbondale, Champaign, Elwood/Chicagoland (buses from Chicago), Galena, Mattoon, Peoria and East St Louis.
- Sunday September 9 at 2pm: NAACP Listen, Lead, Share Community Dialog on clean energy policy on Chicago’s westside (Harding Street Church of God, 3924 W. 14th St).
- Wednesday September 12 at 6:30pm: Listen, Lead Share community dialog on clean energy policy in Springfield.
- Thursday, September 13 at 7:00pm (Central): UUA webinar for Solidarity with imprisoned Indigenous Water Protectors.
- Tuesday September 18 at 10am: Rally to #EndMoneyBail at the Thompson Center in Chicago.
- Saturday September 22 from 10am to 5pm: Faith in Place Green Team Summit at the Field Museum in Chicago. UUs are invited to meet up in the Sirgusa Picnic area (lower/ground level) at 9:30am.
- Tuesday September 25: UUANI Action of the Week – National Voter Registration Day.
- Tuesday October 2: UUANI Action of the Week – League of Women Voters Voter Guide.
- Saturday October 6 from 9:30am-4:00pm: How Can We Save Our Democracy? Meadville Lombard Day of Learning at the Unitarian Church of Evanston.
Thanks for all you do for justice!
Peace and Power,
UUANI is supported by contributions from Unitarian Universalist individuals and congregations in Illinois, and by grants from the Fund for Unitarian Universalist Social Responsibility, the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, the Chicago Area Unitarian Universalist Council, and the Illinois Environmental Council. We are grateful for each of these forms of support!Category UU Advocacy Network of Illinois Tags