Final Spring Push Edition
The state spring legislative session is almost over, but there are still opportunities to make a difference before it ends May 31.
URGENT ACTION OPPORTUNITIES
Promoting Justice, Equity and Compassion: A Responsible Budget
Illinois’ budget impasse continues, affecting those most vulnerable among us most severely. It is being reported that a bipartisan group of legislators has put forward a budget deal that would raise $5.4 billion in new revenue with no cuts to human services.
- Call 844-311-CUTS (844-311-2887) to call your state legislator or click here to demand that a responsible budget with adequate revenue to fund vital services be enacted NOW.
The UUANI Board has also joined an amicus brief in support of a lawsuit against the state for nonpayment for services.
Affirming Worth and Dignity: Ending Unlimited Solitary Confinement and Lifetime Employment Bans
A bill to limit solitary confinement in Illinois prisons will be coming to a vote by the end of May.
- Please click here to find your state legislators’ contact information to call or send an email to put limits on this cruel and unusual form of punishment.
A bill to remove barriers to employment for people with records will also be coming to a vote.
Also, Voices for Creative Nonviolence is organizing a walk to stop Thomson Prison starting in Chicago on May 28, stopping at the UU Society of Geneva and in DeKalb, and ending with a rally in Thomson IL on June 11.
Respecting the Interdependent Web: Clean Jobs
Negotiations continue between the Clean Jobs Coalition and energy producers, but Exelon has introduced its own legislation claiming that it was a result of these negotiations (it was not). It’s important to let legislators know that, unlike the Exelon bill, the Clean Jobs bill is the only bill that has the potential to create thousands of jobs while cutting energy costs, protecting our health, reducing pollution and ending our reliance on fossil fuels.
The IL House of Representatives adjourned last week without considering the Fair Tax amendment to remove the flat tax requirement. Despite strong public support, Governor Rauner’s opposition to the Fair Tax effectively blocked the amendment from being considered. However, considerable bipartisan support has been developed for another effort next session.
SB2758, which would remove the affidavit requirement for misconduct complaints, has been referred back to committee.
Voting Rights & Mobilizing for the 2016 Elections Webinar: June 1 at 6pm
UUA Congregational Advocacy & Witness Director Susan Leslie will share strategies and resources, including UU Funding Program $, for mobilizing during this electoral season. We’ll be talking about strengthening democracy, registering voters, Getting out the Vote, protecting voting rights, election protection, speaking out on our values, developing community and congregational partnerships and more! Click here to register.
Organizing on the Side of Love Webinar: available starting June 1, with interactive sessions on July 1, July 29, and Aug 24
Standing on the Side of Love Campaign Director Caitlin Breedlove will lead eight 30 minute modules and three 1 hour interactive sessions focusing on movement building, community organizing, spiritual sustenance in this work, assessment, base building, intersectionality, etc. Click here to register for this low-cost ($30), high-impact opportunity for folks interested in spiritually-rooted community organizing and movement building.
Thanks to members of Quincy Unitarian Church and Abraham Lincoln UU Congregation (Springfield) for participating in Responsible Budget Coalition efforts in Jacksonville!
Thanks to UU Prison Ministry of Illinois members who have been instrumental in advancing the bill to limit solitary confinement!
Thanks to ongoing efforts, two more sponsors have signed onto the Clean Jobs bill. One legislator’s office commented that public pressure left them with no choice but to sign on!UU Advocacy Network of Illinois Tags