Advocacy Alerts

Thanks to the CCSJ Advocacy Team for these Advocacy Alerts!

PICO National Network
Tell Speaker John Boehner: Renounce the hate!
A few days ago, a California congressman told 18-year-old aspiring American, Jessica, that he “hates illegals,” and threatened her and her family during a meeting in his office.
None of God’s children deserve hate – especially from our elected leaders. In response, the PICO National Network is calling on U.S. House Speaker John Boehner to publicly condemn the behavior of his colleague, U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48). We have Jessica’s back and we’re looking out for the 11 million other aspiring Americans like her who deserve a roadmap to citizenship from Congress. Ask John Boehner to renounce the hate.
Immigration Reform
On February 14 2013, the U.S. Jesuit Conference, JRS/USA, and the Kino Border Initiative (KBI) released a joint report that examines the experiences of Mexican and Central American migrants deported to Northern Mexico by U.S. immigration authorities. The comprehensive report highlights the stories of migrants needlessly separated from family members as a result of U.S. detention and deportation policies. The study also details incidents of denial of rights, physical and verbal abuse suffered by migrants at the hands of U.S. Border Patrol and Mexican police, as well as attacks on migrants perpetrated by criminals, human traffickers, robbers and gangs in Northern Mexico.
As our elected officials attempt to craft a viable immigration system, we urge them to place family unity, human dignity, transparency and accountability at the center of their debates.
We ask you to contact the Obama Administration and your representatives in Congress, and urge them to pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill.
Justice for Immigrants
Send a Justice for Immigrants postcard to Congress!
Show your U.S. Senators and Representatives that Catholics and other supporters of immigrants want our elected officials to enact meaningful and compassionate immigration reform legislation. Send a postcard now!
Sierra Club
Robust Weatherization Assistance Program for Low-income Americans
The government’s Weatherization Assistance Program is a remarkable success story. It has increased the comfort and reduced the energy bills of more than one million low-income families. Families receiving weatherization services see their annual energy bills reduced by an average of about $437, depending on fuel prices. Tell President Obama to make sure the Weatherization Assistance Program has adequate resources to continue its important work.
Interfaith Worker Justice
The United Mine Workers of America
The United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) represents coal miners working in some of the most dangerous and demanding jobs. Workers in this industry endure daily peril which takes a heavy toll on miners’ bodies and their health, in order to help provide our nation’s energy needs. Through decades of collective bargaining, the UMWA has negotiated contracts that placed great emphasis on the health and safety of active miners and health care security for retired miners; they sacrificed wage and pension increases to secure these protections.
Today these collective bargaining gains made by working miners are threatened by Patriot’s bankruptcy proceedings. As persons of faith and from a moral perspective, The UMWA are committed to a public witness of justice and peace, and in that spirit they call on Patriot Coal, Arch Coal, and Peabody Energy to honor their contractual obligations to the current and retired UMWA workforce. Sign this petition to show your support for coal miner worker justice.
Nebraska Appleseed
LB 577 Support
Hard-working Nebraska families need the security of quality health care. A bill in front of your Senator could help 54,000 Nebraskans gain that security. 100% of the cost for this care is covered by the federal government thru 2016 to expand Medicaid to uninsured working Nebraskans, gradually decreasing permanently to 90%; the bill would returned $3 billion to Nebraska’s economy as a result of increased economic activity in the health sector due to federal funds from 2014-2020; expanding Medicaid eligibility will save the state over $128 million by 2020 and create thousands of jobs across the state; and increasing health coverage will make more Nebraskans healthier, give them access to the health care they need when they need it and save all of us more health care costs down the road. To support LB 577, call your Senator right now and ask them for their support to expand Nebraska’s Medicaid program. Find your senator’s phone number now.
Amnesty International
An Inclusive Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
Passage of an inclusive VAWA would protect and support women throughout the U.S. from acts of violence and exploitation. VAWA in the 113th Congress must specifically include provisions addressing jurisdictional issues that currently make combating violence against Native American and Alaska Native women nearly impossible, provide greater protection to immigrant women who are survivors of domestic violence, and protect LGBT survivors of violence from discrimination based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.
Passage of an inclusive VAWA is a critical step towards protecting and supporting Native women, immigrant women, and LGBT people. Reauthorizing an inclusive VAWA would help end the unacceptable levels of violence faced by all women and allow them the access to the justice that they deserve.  Please cosponsor the re-authorization of VAWA today!
Upcoming Events
Center for Service and Justice
Green Bag Lunch
On March 4th from 11:30-1pm in the CCSJ Multi-purpose room, Dr. Soraya Cardenas of the Creighton Sociology and Anthropology department will give a talk entitled, “Facing Environmental Challenges: Marginalized Peoples at Risk.” Join us to hear about how environmental changes in today’s world affect those who are poor and marginalized in society. Bring a simple lunch if you’d like; dessert will be provided. With questions, please contact Haley Warren at or Ken Reed-Bouley at
Restore Omaha Conference
This conference will take place this weekend, March 1-2nd, at the Metropolitan Community College. It opens with a reception Friday, March 1, and the conference is Saturday, March 2nd, 8am to 4 p.m. and includes a keynote lecture, three educational sessions, live demonstrations, exhibitors, lunch, and the Restore Jam where all interested attendees are invited to share their current restoration projects in five minutes or less. For more information click here!

Wednesday’s What’s Up in the World [10.10.12]

Hello there Cortina family,

I know that midterms can be a stressful time for all of us and it’s likely that we are all staying out of the “news” loop this week. So, for this week’s “what’s up in the world?” I have three articles that I thought might be inspirational to get us through the rest of midterms!

The first article is from the NY Times. It is about growing small business world in Africa. This article talks about how women across the continent are helping Africa’s economy boom in a way that has never been seen before.

The second is a video from Al Jazeera about a Syrian cartoonist named Juan and how his message of non-violent revolution has inspired many activists in the region.

The third is an article from the BBC that focuses on the recent killing of the leader of the Zetas drug cartel in Mexico. The war on drugs in Mexico is an ongoing battle that I think is often overlooked but definitely one that is close to home.

Happy Midterms!

And may the odds be ever in your favor!

-Michelle V

Wednesday’s “What’s Going on in the World?”

With labor day past and the official end to summer creeping up on us, I don’t blame anyone who isn’t all that eager to hear about the evils happening in our world. So, I figured that for this Wednesday after labor day, as a little homage, we could focus on positive labor oriented things happening in our world!

In Saudi Arabia there has been some progress and great support for integrating women into the work force. Especially since about 57 percent of Saudi women have university degrees, but only about 15 percent are in the work force. This article discusses Saudi Arabia’s openness to women seeking work and points toward the question, “Why do we educate our women and then expect them to just sit at home?”

Here is an interesting piece from Aljazeera that talks a little bit about the recent upward trend in migration from Spain to South America directly related to labor and availability of jobs. It’s an interesting view of immigration and labor outside of the United States. People are immigrating and looking for jobs all over the world.

This last article is about Greece’s new longer work week suggestion. The article also speaks briefly about their current economic crisis. It’s an interesting trade for more bailout funds. I am not sure what Americans would think if the work week was expanded in our country to cover our economic crisis. I guess we’ll have to see how the Greeks respond.

These aren’t issues that we usually hear about as pressing international news, however, I thought them important because they do impact many working class people around our world. I hope this helps us feel even just a little more connected to them.

Happy Wednesday!

-Michelle V.