Central Valley to gather to address racial, economic and environmental inequalities

Posted at 4:27 PM, Sep 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-09 19:27:27-04
As debates around racial, economic and environmental justice continue, a new organization in the Central Valley is taking action.
Well over a thousand residents, prominent faith leaders, congregations of all faith traditions and community partners are busing in to the Fresno Convention center for the first LIFT forum to call on their elected officials to take a stance against the struggles that everyday people face across the region.
“We’re revealing a ‘People’s Covenant’ that goes into our vision for a more prosperous Valley,” said Joseph McKellar, Interim Director of Faith in the Valley. “From the city council level to The Capitol, we demand that our elected officials stand with us and not the larger corporations and businesses when it comes to issues like jobs, the environment, criminal justice reform and more.”
Faith in the Valley is hosting the LIFT forum on Saturday September 10, 2016. They are a new faith-based grassroots community organization composed of 120 congregations across Merced, Kern, Fresno, Stanislaus, and San Joaquin counties. Their goal is to work together with community partners and elected officials and candidates to create an equitable future for the Valley. This gathering is grounded in the strong multi-faith communities in the region as they lead discussions and prayers throughout the event.
“This event is a powerful space for our brothers and sisters to speak up about the injustices that our people are facing every day in the Central Valley and is an opportunity for those that are benefitting from the problem to learn and listen,” said Pastor DJ Criner of Saint Rest Baptist Church and the Board Chair of Faith in Community in Fresno, CA. “A powerful movement will be created grounded in hope, love, and faith that together we can make the Central Valley a safe place for our families to thrive.”
In order to create a more just future of the Central Valley, Faith in the Valley will continue to demand for elected officials to start stand with the people they represent by focusing on legislation and policies that are going to have a lasting impact on Central Valley communities. As one important step towards that, congregations and leaders are committing to having 50,000 conversations with new and infrequent voters in order to turn thousands out to vote this November.
Locally, buses will be leaving from Taft, Arvin and Bakersfield, CA. The bus from Bakersfield will be leaving from the parking lot of Self Help Credit Union located at 2100 H. St., Bakersfield, CA 93301 at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, September 10, 2016.