This week, author and professor Shawn Ginwright, Ph.D., will be a featured guest on The Belong Circle Virtual Town Hall, along with Pastor Mike and other guests. The discussion is hosted by PICO California co-director Pastor Ben McBride, and is part of the #BringTheHEAT Movement focused on reforming and reimagining public. Click here to register.
Andy Levine, deputy director of Faith in the Valley, spoke with the Fresno Bee about a recent rise in crime in Fresno. There has been a 71% increase in shootings and a 64% increase in stabbings since April. The rise was addressed by Fresno police chief Andy Hall (below) who has said that while he is against defunding the police he supports the creation of Fresno’s Police Reform Commission. But he also worries that its recommendations will come without “holding those accountable who prey upon our citizens." Levine told the paper that he was troubled by Hall’s claim that the uptick in crime was from the efforts being made to re-imagine police funding. “That is just unprofessional. The truth is the reason why violence occurs in our community is because we have funded so heavily the police departments in our city and our country at the expense of other, more proactive things, in our community.” Click here to read more.
Naomi Tutu, daughter of Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu, joined Faith in Indiana at Promenade Park in Fort Wayne for a public action focused on how local police handled protests following George Floyd’s murder and what they could have done better. “Our young people were unfairly targeted and we know that no one really wants that in this community, so let’s come together and let’s see what we can do to change and to reimagine what policing can really be,” said Cookye Rutledge, a minister with Faith in Indiana, to CBS Fort Wayne. “We are not anti-police...we’re saying that there’s some duties that they’re doing that they really shouldn’t have to. We want them to do what they were trained to do. We want them to be the guardians of the peace, rather than the warriors.” Click here to watch the story
LIVE FREE is proud to join Movement for Black Lives in the launch of The BREATHE Act—a 21st Century Black Movement Civil Rights Bill. Drafted by the Electoral Justice Project of the Movement for Black Lives, the bill lays out a radical reimagining of public safety, community care, and how we spend money as a society, through four steps: divest federal resources from incarceration and policing; invest in new approaches to community safety that lead states to shrink their criminal-legal systems and focus on the protection of Black lives—including Black mothers, Black trans people, and Black women; allocate new money to build healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities; and hold political leaders accountable and enhance the self-determination of all Black communities. To learn more and become a community cosponsor of the bill, visit BreatheAct.org.