Social Justice Committee
The Social Justice Committee has been an active participant in UU Nashua Church affairs since 1987, organizing educational events, initiating/supporting outreach programs, and helping to serve as our congregation's social justice advocates.
We have a table most Sundays during coffee hour, and we invite you to stop by for conversation and exploration about how you can get involved. Come see us!
Ending Hunger and Homelessness Project (EHH)
Since January, 2012, the EHH Project has been a major focus of the Social Justice Committee. With church-wide participation and numerous opportunities for member involvement, this project has become well integrated in our church life. Click here for more information.
Our Mission Statement
The Social Justice committee of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Nashua, grounded in our UU principles, is committed to making our church a force for positive social change in our community and in society at large.
- We advocate for peace, justice, compassion and caring. We encourage all church members to be engaged, through their deeds and generosity, in issues of local, national and global concern, and to develop action plans in areas of particular interest to them.
- We provide a forum for a wide range of ideas on issues of concern. We ask church members and friends to actively participate in educational programs on important social issues.
- We work with UU churches, other religious congregations, civic, labor and social service organizations and all groups that are seeking to build a more peaceful, just and caring society.
Although the membership of the Social Justice Committee is large and individually members are working on different issues, we are currently organizing (and inviting larger church member participation in) the following:
|Community Outreach (Community Action)||In 2006, we formed an ongoing sub-committee of the SJC. The Community Outreach Team organizes the Nashua Soup Kitchen meal preparation, manages the Sunday Outreach Collection program, and partners with other groups, including the Greater Nashua Continuum of Care toward the goal of ending hunger and homelessness in greater Nashua. Click here for more information.|
|Retirement Security||We are working with GSOP (see below) and The Center for Community Change to give Social Security and Medicare greater attention in the 2011-12 primary season. This involves bird dogging candidates and speaking with the media.|
|Homework Help and Tutoring Program||The Homework Help and Tutoring Program was set up in spring 2011 to provide neighborhood children help with their schoolwork. The program is staffed by volunteers, and is free of charge to interested families. The program is run with support from GSOP and is currently being offered on Wednesdays from 4-6 pm at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Nashua.|
Please visit our Social Justice Table in coffee hour for more information.
Since Fall of 2011, several members of the UU Nashua Social Justice community have been participating in Occupy New Hampshire and Occupy Nashua. This has included spending time at the Occupy New Hampshire site in Manchester (Veteran's Park), attending statewide and local general assemblies, participating in the ongoing discussions within Occupy, and bringing information to the congregation about events and related topics of interest (available at the Social Justice table during coffee hour).
Some links you may find helpful:
|Occupy Wall St. web page:||http://www.occupywallst.org|
|Occupy New Hampshire web page:||http://www.occupynh.org|
|Occupy Nashua web page:||http://www.occupynashua.org|
|Occupy Wall St. facebook page:||http://www.facebook.com/OccupyWallSt|
|Occupy New Hampshire facebook page:||http://www.facebook.com/#!/OccupyNH|
|Occupy Nashua facebook page:||http://www.facebook.com/#!/OccupyNashua|
The Granite State Organizing Project (GSOP) is an organization in New Hampshire's Merrimack Valley (including Concord, Manchester, Nashua, and adjoining towns). It is made up of representatives from religious, labor, and community groups that work together to address local issues of vital concern and improve life in our region. The issues that GSOP have identified as most critical to our area are housing, healthcare, jobs, and education, and work is going on in each of those areas to research the underlying issues, consider the strategies that we might take, and initiate courses of action.
Our church is a sponsoring member of GSOP, and church members can get involved in various ways. Please check the GSOP web site or stop by the Social Justice Committee table for more information.
UUA General Assembly Resolutions
Every June, the GA passes a number of resolutions, classified either a "Statement of Conscience" or "Action of Immediate Witness," on issues of social justice:
- A Statement of Conscience (SOC) starts out as a "Study Action Issue" (SAI) initiated somewhere in a member congregation and then submitted to the Commission on Social Witness (CSW). SAIs that are approved by the CSW are voted on at the General Assembly Annual Meeting. If it gets selected (only one Study Action Issue is selected every two years), study action guides are prepared and go out to member congregations the following year. Congregations are encouraged to follow the guide and conduct various study/action activities. At the end of the 2nd year of study/action, a final vote at GA determines whether it gets accepted as a Statement of Conscience. Go to www.uua.org/csw/speakout.html for more details on this process.
- Actions of Immediate witness deal with issues that are particularly time sensitive. Since they are not subject to congregational review, they are not considered policy of the Association - just the viewpoint of the General Assembly itself. They must be passed by a two-thirds vote.
You can investigate, by year, all the GA resolutions that have been adopted since 1961 by going to www.uua.org/actions/chronological.html.
Some web sites particularly recommended by the Social Justice Committee:
- www.commondreams.org This is a great site that includes a tremendous number of links - to newspapers, journals, news agencies and more. It is the single most valuable entry to information and opinion about peace and justice issues.
- www.truthout.org Each day this web site offers a few especially interesting and important articles, speeches or editorials from the US and other countries, which otherwise we would probably not see.
- www.moveon.org This site is focused on suggesting and even facilitating citizen expression against a rush to war. They have been very successful in enabling hundreds of thousands of Americans in as little as a day or two, through the Internet, to join together in anti-war efforts.
- www.nhpeaceaction.org This site acts as an umbrella to encourage, organize, or publicize anti-war activities in New Hampshire.
Some legislative/congressional oriented sites:
|Senate Official Web Site||www.senate.gov|
|House Official Web Site||www.house.gov|
|THOMAS (the most comprehensive legislative search engine)||thomas.loc.gov|
|Your link to Congress||www.congress.org|
|Webster (New Hampshire legislative search engine)||www.state.nh.us|
|State by state analysis of major political agendas||www.stateline.org|
Some other recommended sites:
|Unitarian Universalist Service Committee||www.uusc.org|
|UUA Faith in Action||www.uua.org/faithinaction|
|United for a Fair Economy||www.ufenet.org|
|American Friends Service Committee||www.afsc.org|
|National Labor Council||www.nlcnet.org|
|National Coalition against Legalized Gambling||www.ncalg.org|
|Planned Parenthood Federation of America||www.plannedparenthood.org|
|Center for Reproductive Law and Policy||www.crlp.org|
|Death Penalty Resource Center||www.essential.org/dpic|
|Campaign to End the Death Penalty||www.nodeathpenalty.org|