Justice Updates – December 10, 2019

Need a dose of cute? Watch Hafod Hardware’s 2019 Christmas Advertisement, Be a Kid this Christmas.

Do you knit or crochet?  You might want to make a plastic mat for a homeless person.  It’s a great project for Christmas vacation.   Check out the directions.

This December, people around the country will gather to honor and remember those who have lost their lives to gun violence. As of December 1, there have been 35,943 gun deaths including homicides, suicides, and accidents.  There have been 385 mass shootings.  Take a minute and pray for these victims and their families.  Write a note or make a call to your legislators, either state or federal, and tell them to take action to stop these shootings. If you know someone who has lost a loved one to gun violence, contact them and send them your love.

Call your representative!   The world’s annual carbon emissions need to drop by nearly half by 2030 to net zero by 2050 to keep global warming at 1/5 degrees Celsius. However, the 2018 UNIPCC report projects that annual global carbon emissions are on track to stay the same or increase, not decrease, by 2030. Call your representative today about the 100% Clean Economy Act of 2019 (R.R. 5221). This legislation sets a nationwide foal of achieving a 100 percent clean energy economy by 2050, defined as net-zero pollution across all sectors of the U.S. economy. The 100% Clean Economy Act of 2019 lays out principles for federal agency action, including, but not limited to:

  • improving public health, resilience, and environmental outcomes, especially for low-income and rural communities, communities of color, Tribal and indigenous communities, deindustrialized communities, and other communities disproportionately impacted by climate change;
  • enhancing quality job creation and ensuring fairness and equity for workers and communities affected by the transition to a 100 percent clean economy;
  • providing benefits for consumers, small businesses, and rural communities; and
  • preparing communities for the impacts and risks of climate change.

The administration has proposed raising fees for those seeing asylum and naturalization.  The proposed fee structure changes would:

  • Drastically increase the cost of naturalization from $640 to $1,170 – this is a historic high and a staggering 83 percent increase.
  • Establish an unprecedented, new $50 fee for affirmative asylum. This would make the U.S. one of just four countries (Australia, Fiji and Iran being the other three) to levy such a fee.
  • Create a new fee for DACA renewals, raising the total cost from $495 to $765.
  • Effectively end a long-standing fee waiver program that has kept naturalization, green card renewals and other benefits accessible.
  • Transfer $207.6 million in funds that should be used for immigration and naturalization processing to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, to use for enforcement.
  • Increase Adjustment of Status to Lawful Permanent Residencyfrom $1,225 to $2,195 by requiring separate filing fees for work and travel authorization. The current fee includes applications for both work and travel documents.
  • Charge asylum-seekers for work permit applications. Currently, there is no charge for asylum seekers to seek work authorization for the first time.
  • Limit stakeholder participation by shortening the comment period from the standard sixty days to only thirty days.

You can make a public comment by using the Sisters of Mercy website.  Reminder:  Personalize the message of any sign-ons.  Rule of thumb – ⅓ original content (unique language) to be counted.  Consider putting in Scripture, faith-language, stories,

Archbishops Coakley and Gregory and Bishop Dewane have served in death penalty states. They believe it’s time to stop federal executions. They write “Human dignity can be difficult to understand when we are confronted with the depths of our sins. But we believe, from Scripture and tradition, that each person is created by God in his image and likeness, and the dignity that flows from God’s creative act cannot be removed by the actions of any person, no matter how bad, no matter how hurtful. We reverence God’s gift of life in those at the beginning of life and those at its end, in the weak and in the strong, in the poor and in the rich, in the happy and in the sad, in the honored and in the forgotten. And we reverence God’s gift of life in the guilty and in the innocent.” Read more here.  (Note. The Supreme Court stayed the execution of three federal prisoners who were supposed to be executed this week.)

Immigration is being used as a political weapon and is fueling division and violence in our country. Frontline from PBS  produced at 54 minute video called “Zero Tolerance” that explains how this has happened.  You can view it here.

 

Posted in News, Peace & Justice Weekly Updates

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