Economic Justice

Photo credit: Suzi Spangenberg, UUJM Economic Justice team member

People. Power. The two do not always connect. UUJM’s Economic Justice Action Team is working to address the issues of injustice in our system from a UU-grounded approach. Primarily focusing on wage inequality, housing and homelessness and systemic oppression, UUJM is working with partners across the state and country to make the world more just.

Currently we are planning and hosting a series of Economic Justice Summits across California, bringing together often diverse community-based groups to form partnerships as we seek to make changes in our communities and at the Capitol. There are opportunities to get involved as well!


Stand with Low Wage Workers: Support Legislation that Affirms their Dignity

The Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry of California (UUJMCA), through its Economic Justice Action Team, has endorsed bills pending in the Legislature that will honor workers whose work has for too long been treated as menial and unworthy.  The bills are described below. We urge you to take the action described to support this legislation soon, as the Legislative session will end this month.

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June 4th Economic Justice Conference

Thank you for joining us for this powerful event, bringing together workers, advocates and people of faith from around the Bay Area as we learned ways to advance affordable housing and worker justice from community partners and leaders.

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Wages Measure How We Honor Human Dignity and the Dignity of Work

The November 2015 webinar on Low Wages and Costly Housing presented by the Economic Justice team outlined innovative ideas for housing plus the current state of wages and inequality. Below are suggested actions for two current wage efforts.  Download the PowerPoint! Dignity at Work-The Moral Imperative of a Living Wage. walmartSUPPORT WALMART WORKERS--www.makingchangeatwalmart.org • Sign a letter supporting the campaign • Visit one of the actions at your local Walmart • Put an article in your church’s newsletter about the experience • Invite a Walmart worker to speak at your church • Lift up the struggles of Walmart workers living in poverty during your congregation’s Joys and Sorrows SUPPORT STATE LEGISLATION California SB935 (Leno): Calls for $13.00/hour by 2017 And indexed to inflation in 2018. It passed the Senate this year, but failed in an Assembly committee, with a couple of key Democrats not voting. It will be reintroduced next year.

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HOUSING: It's Time to Think Out of the Box

The November 2015 webinar on Low Wages and Costly Housing presented by the Economic Justice team outlined innovative ideas for housing. Below are just some of the examples shared at the webinar on innovative housing. Download the Powerpoint! Housing for All

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Minimum Wage Increase Gains Momentum

“No labor is menial unless you’re not getting adequate wages.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

There is clear public support for increasing the wages of the lowest paid workers in California. To date almost 30 cities and counties have passed minimum wage or living wage laws that lift the take home pay of California workers. Other proposals are pending: in El Cerrito in the San Francisco Bay Area, there is a hearing next week on a proposed increase in the minimum wage to $15/hour by 2020, with Cost of Living increases thereafter, plus paid sick days and insurance that workers benefit from so-called “service charges” or “hospitality fees.” Interfaith coalitions which include UUs have been vocal in their support for this proposal.

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Housing for All

All:  Here is a copy of the PPT presentation on housing ideas from a seminar Bob Lane and I gave recently on Low Wages - High Housing Costs....there may be useful information in here for those of you working on housing issues, particularly some ideas that came up an earlier community conversation on how to solve the shortage of very low and low income housing shortage. Mary Fenelon (maryefenelon@gmail.com New Housing for All 2015

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Walnut Creek Armory Emergency Shelter

Trinity Center, a  day respite center for homeless singles in Walnut Creek, is working with the City of Walnut Creek to host an emergency winter evening shelter from December 12, 2015 through March 12, 2016. The 90 day program is open to Trinity Center members only who sign up for the entire program, which will include support services such as job training, job placement, locating housing, medical services and other needs.  Go to www.trinitycenter.wc for further details about the plan.  

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Darden Restaurants Must Do Better

The Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry of California is proud to act as a partner to the Restaurant Opportunities Centers in working to win justice for restaurant workers in our state and across the nation.  Here is their latest report on what’s happening in the struggle for fair wages and decent working conditions at Darden Restaurants:

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Let's "Make it Fair": Working for Economic Justice through Property Tax Reform

At the core of California's broken tax system is Prop 13. This piece of legislation, passed in 1978, has created loopholes that only serve to exacerbate the wealth gap and punish our communities and our children. We are called as people of faith to take on these power dynamics. Please join UUJM in supporting the Make it Fair campaign. Click here for more information. Click here to pledge your support. Print an extra copy for your congregation to sign on to!

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