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

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.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

An update from Ann Scholz . . .

Dear Friends,

Once again, an update from Ann Scholz, Associate Director for Social Mission, Leadership Conference of Women Religious and action regarding Dreamers. 

1.. Dreamers have not given up and neither will we! Protect Dreamers by supporting the USA Act of 2017 and the DREAM Act of 2017. It’s time to ask our U.S. Representatives to Support HR 4796: The USA Act of 2017, and HR 3440: The DREAM Act of 2017 and to demand a vote in the House—NOW!  Without a legislative solution, Dreamers' futures remain uncertain and they live in constant fear of deportation. Congress should take action to protect these extraordinary young people--NOW. H.R. 4796, the Uniting and Securing America (USA) Act of 2017 was introduced by Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX) and Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-CA) in the House of Representatives and has more than 50 bipartisan co-sponsors. The USA Act would protect and provide Dreamers with a path to citizenship as long as they satisfy residency, age and education, military or employment requirements. Additionally, H.R. 4796 augments border security with the use of new technology rather than a wall; seeks to address root causes of migration from Central America; and increases staffing resources for immigration courts to carry out their work.

H.R. 3440, the Dream Act of 2017 was introduced by Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Ileana (R-FL). The bill would allow permanent residence  and a path to citizenship  for children of undocumented immigrants if they came to this country as children, get a high school degree or GED, pass a background check and English proficiency test, and have no criminal record.

The U.S. Bishops support both the Dream Act and the USA Act.  The Dream Act remains the ideal legislative solution. And while the USA Act can still be improved upon, as written it is a compromise bill that provides a path to citizenship for 1.8 million Dreamers and offers proportionate border security measures. We are urging the House of Representatives to urgently move forward these pieces of legislation. 

Send your letter in support for the USA Act and the Dream Act and urge legislative action today! 

2. Second notice from Ann Scholz, Associate Director for Social Mission Leadership Conference of Women Religious.  Please take some time to read them and to take action.
The House Agriculture Committee has passed a farm bill that could force a million people off the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps). SNAP helps more than 40 million people put food on the table and prevent hunger.

Please contact your U.S. Representative and ask her or him to oppose the House Farm Bill, H.R. 2. Call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 to be connected to your Representative. 

The House farm bill makes existing work requirements for SNAP even harsher. Individuals would have just a month to find a job or enter a qualified job training program before they lose SNAP benefits. And every month they must prove they are working the required amount.  Work is important, but SNAP is not a jobs program. It is an anti-hunger program, and it is extremely effective.

If Congress is serious about getting more people into the workforce, raising wages, and creating jobs, then it should look to invest in existing workforce programs, programs Congress has been cutting for years. Instead, this bill creates a huge new bureaucracy that states must implement with woefully insufficient funding. 

Individuals hit hardest by this bill are people with disabilities, low-income working parents, seniors, and individuals with serious barriers to employment. We believe all are created in the image of God and that each person has the right to live a life of dignity with access to basic necessities. 

The bill will next go to the floor for a vote before the full House of Representatives. Please contact your U.S. Representative and ask her or him to oppose the House Farm Bill, H.R. 2. Call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 to be connected to your Representative. 

We urge you to make your voice heard and fill out this send a message that lets the House know of your support for the USA Act and the Dream Act and the for need legislative action NOW.

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