It’s hard to believe that just one year ago, 1,500 of us stood together and publicly launched Faith In The Valley at the Founding Convention. We are so proud of all that we have accomplished together since then. One of the many big wins across the Valley this past year is the new breakthrough rental housing inspection program to enforce healthy standards for rental properties.
“We cannot stop ICE from doing what they do,” said Curtis Smith, a local pastor and community organizer, as he warned the volunteers not to interfere with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. “But we can offer support so that people know they can count on their community to show up in their time of need.” The “rapid response” training program was one of a half-dozen being carried out this fall by Faith in the Valley.
We are extremely disappointed by the Supreme Court’s initial ruling this week to allow the Administration’s “Muslim Ban”—banning travel to the United States by residents of six Muslim-majority countries—to go into effect. We are sickened by this policy (grounded in absolutely no sound basis or rationale).
San Joaquin County residents, overall, are struggling to prosper, researchers say. And while the community is lagging behind other counties, the largest group of people affected by disparities continues to be minorities, particularly black residents, which make up 6.7 percent of the county’s population.
Numerous cities have dedicated public money to similar efforts in the face of increased immigration enforcement under the Trump administration, including Los Angeles and Chicago. But the Fresno City Council voted down a proposal in June to contribute public money to such a legal defense fund. “Even so, our community did not leave that day feeling defeated. We felt empowered,” Faith in Fresno organizer Sukaina Hussain said.
After nearly 14 years of protests, dozens of meetings with various officials, extensive research and lots of prayer, hundreds of concerned citizens and dedicated families finally convinced the Fresno City Council to pass breakthrough legislation that will begin to hold slumlords accountable for their unhealthy and dangerous properties. This historic vote to approve the Rental Housing Improvement Act happened in February. It’s now time for the vote to turn into action.
SB 31’s passage sends an important message to our Muslim sisters and brothers about our love and care for them during a time of increasing vulnerability. People of faith across the state do not stand for the dehumanization represented by the federal administration’s attempts to create a Muslim registry or Muslim ban.
Faith in the Valley, a grassroots organization that represents around 120 congregations in the central San Joaquin Valley said the city declined to meet with the group so organizers could get an update on the plan. The organization wants to help and is concerned about tenant education. “We can’t wait for it to begin, we have to let folks know this is coming,” said community organizer Lety Valencia.
After nine long months of communities and congregations struggling to defend themselves against the rising tide of deportations that are ripping families apart, SB 54, the California Values Act, has been signed into law. Faith in the Valley, along with PICO California and its 400 member congregations across 24 counties, thank Governor Brown, Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De León, his staff, and...
The American Civil Liberties Union of California (ACLU-CA) and local partner organizations today launched Hey, Meet Your DA!, a campaign designed to raise awareness about the powerful role district attorneys (DAs) play in the state’s 58 counties, and to increase accountability and transparency within the offices.