The Interfaith Alliance of Rochester is an advocacy group that campaigns for social justice. We use physical presence, letter writing, lobbying, speaking to groups and attending rallies. We view that governance should have a moral budget that supports those in need. We congratulated County Executive Cheryl DiNolfo for the increased aid for child care subsidies, and Mayor Lovely Warren for her proclaiming Rochester to be a sanctuary city.
RCRGV (Rochester Coalition for Reduced Gun Violence)
RCRGV is in a stage of development. TIAR helped create RCRGV and has given leadership to the coalition. While the coalition is growing we are active in programs. TIAR supports efforts of the coalition and works to publicize events. As events grow there will be more visibility and greater impact in our community.
REACH (Rochester Emergency Action Committee for the Homeless)
The Alliance was active in supporting the effort to house the homeless. We donated funds and supported religious groups and individuals to help provide meals. At the beginning of the year REACH determined that they needed to become an advocate for Housing First. TIAR is working with this advocacy effort. Second, there is a workshop planned for the fall to educate caregivers regarding their understanding and use of the plan for Housing First.
We joined RocACTS as an extension of our advocacy. RocACTS is composed of faith and other organizations as members. TIAR is composed of individuals from various faith groups. By working closely with this organization we felt that we can have more impact with our advocacy.
ROCHESTER VOTER ALLIANCE
TIAR supports this endeavor along with the League of Women Voters and other civic and faith groups. During presidential election years, RVA organizes non-partisan voter registration campaigns in local areas where there is low voter turnout.
FEPC (Fair Campaign Practices Committee).
Along with the League of Women Voters, the Alliance works to encourage fair and honest elections by asking candidates to pledge not to use unfair tactics or advertising materials during the campaign. When there are complaints, a bi-partisan panel reviews the information and then publishes its findings regarding whether each complaint is valid or not.
Letters were sent to Mayor Warren supporting the city's decision to be a Sanctuary City.
New York State
RAISE THE AGE
New York State was one of only two states to incarcerate 16- and 17-year-olds in adult prisons. Again, letters were sent as we mobilized with other groups to “Raise the Age” to 18. Now a recent law has been enacted to treat them like the youth they are, and not as a part of the adult criminal justice system. This prevents youth from being labeled as criminals and ruining their lives before they are old enough to judge the ramifications of their acts.
At this year's Annual Meeting we are focused on the impact on people’s lives when they are caught up in the threat of being deported and afraid of being separated from their families. The political climate has changed toward immigrants. Supporting these individuals is important so that the United States can live up to its welcoming of the stranger.
SPEAKERS AT BOARD MEETINGS
Elizabeth Osta RETREAT -- IDENTIFYING FOCUS for 2016-2017
Bryan Acuff HOUSING FOR THE HOMELESS
Chiara Smith ACTION FOR A BETTER COMMUNITY: SUPPORT OUR YOUTH
Barbara Lacker-Ware POLICE DEPARTMENT CIVILIAN REVIEW BOARD PROPOSAL
Becky Elwell, President