E-Newsletter: November 2015

E-Newsletter: November 2015


November, 2015
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ISAIAH News and Upcoming Events

Week of Action to End Mass Incarceration!

Join our Facebook GroupFaith Can End Mass Incarceration


Mon Nov 16, from 3:45-5:30pm a panel discussion on Health and Incarceration at Healthy Heartlands Summit, Bloomington Sheraton, 5601 W 78th St., Bloomington.


Healthy Heartlands is a coalition of public health officials and community leaders from 7 states. MN Commissioner of Corrections Tom Roy and MN Commissioner of Health Ed Ehlinger will speak on a panel along with representatives from the Centers for Disease Control, the National Ass’n of City/County Health Officials, and the Ohio Organizing Collaborative.


Wed Nov 18, 8:30am Prayer Vigil before the Prison Population Task Force, MN State Office Building, Room 10, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul


Minnesota is going down a troubling path, locking up people at an accelerated pace. At the last meeting, several members of this Task Force said they didn’t see a problem with leasing the prison owned by for-profit Corrections Corp. of America. We need to be there to stand vigil against any taxpayer dollars going to a company with such a horrible record.


ALSO Wed Nov 18, 2-4pm MN Sentencing Guidelines Commission, Room 116C, State Administration Building, 50 Sherburne Ave., St. Paul.


MN has some of the harshest drug sentencing in the nation. Now, this Commission is actively considering reform. There will be an opportunity for public comment. Whether you wish to speak or not, your presence will make a difference!


The People’s Congress: A Faith, Labor and Community Event for a New Minnesota

On December 12th at the Minneapolis Convention Center, 350 ISAIAH clergy and lay leaders will join 1,000 local allies from neighborhood organizations and labor to celebrate our common story of power and race, to proclaim a


new path forward, and launch into a new movement together for equity so that our state is a place where everyone can thrive. To read or download a flyer with more information, click here.
Support for Minneapolis Paid Sick Time Ordinance

Minneapolis clergy and people of faith held a press conference on October 22nd in support of Minneapolis working families by calling on the City Council to pass a reasonable paid sick leave ordinance before the end of the year. “We decry these disparities and we talk and we gather data,” Pr. Laurie A Eaton said. “But when concrete policy actions are proposed to truly improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, suddenly those options are unrealistic, naïve, ill-conceived and too costly for business. My friends this is exactly what systemic racism looks like.”  Click here to read the ISAIAH press statement on our campaign in support of the Minneapolis Paid Sick Time Ordinance.


Praying to End Payday Loans

Carrying hand-made signs with Bible verses or simply “stop payday lending” written across them, dozens of pastors, clergymen, and other members of the inter-faith organization ISAIAH descended on a Robbinsdale US Bank branch and a nearby Payday America location on Oct. 8 to protest the practice of payday loans. “For too long the financial industry has preyed on the poor, making huge profits and leaving people stuck in poverty,” said Pastor Paul Slack of New Creation Church in Minneapolis. “This needs to end and it needs to end today.” – Faith leaders protest ‘payday loan’ practices in Robbinsdale, SunPost


Faith in St. Paul’s Future

300 people gathered at Redeemer Lutheran Church for a forum with St. Paul candidates for City Council (Wards 1 & 2) and the School Board. This was the kick off to our St. Paul campaign to create economic dignity, family security in the workplace, and racial equity in public schools. Candidates were asked to support support Earned Sick and Safe Time for all St. Paul residents and to support universal all-day Pre-K.


Building an Economy of Inclusion

Rev. Chris Bellefeuille and attendees listen to a neighbor’s story at St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church in Maple Grove where 150 people from the NW suburbs gathered to ask their legislators to cap payday lending and fund transit more fully. ISAIAH’s NW suburban leaders are working to build an economy of inclusion, with everyone participating and no one left out, as called for by Pope Francis.


Many stories were shared of feeling isolated and left out. Sue told about her son, daughter in law and 3 grandchildren living in their home due


Photo by Bain Lothian

to the debt from college loans. Chris shared about feeling left out of the economy due to being over 50 and unemployed. Tom shared the challenges of needing Metro Mobility to take him to his appointments and how difficult it is to have to arrive an hour or more early and sometimes having to leave early.
New ISAIAH Board of Directors

In October, our membership elected a new Board of Directors. Click here for introductions. 


Phyllis Hill, ISAIAH’s Lead Organizer Moves On

After nearly 8 years at ISAIAH, Phyllis Hill is leaving ISAIAH for new opportunities.


“I am grieved yet joyful to apply the skills, experiences and wisdom I learned at ISAIAH to another organizing opportunity in the south, my home. My time at ISAIAH has stretched what I know about my faith, God’s resilient, and powerful people and what is possible in the world! ISAIAH is the place I began to fully live my purpose.


The social justice and racial equity work we’ve accomplished together has touched so many lives, yet, there is so much more to do. Please accept my gratitude and appreciation for the path we’ve walked together.”

Thanks, Phyllis, for your transformative work.


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