Students Applaud Re-Introduction of Gulf Coast Civic Works Act
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Students Applaud Re-Introduction of Gulf Coast Civic Works Act
The Newly Introduced Bipartisan Gulf Coast Civic Works Act (HR 2269) Promotes Infrastructure, Training, Comprehensive Flood Protection and Energy Efficiency
WASHINGTON, DC – May 6th – The Gulf Coast Civic Works Campaign--which was developed and nurtured by students and faculty at campuses across the country--and now has grown into a diverse national partnership of student, community, faith-based, environmental, and human rights organizations, applauds the introduction today of bipartisan federal legislation to rebuild more equitable and resilient communities across the areas still recovering from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.
The Gulf Coast Civic Works Act of 2009 (H.R. 2269) would create 100,000 “green” living wage jobs and training opportunities for Gulf Coast residents and displaced people to rebuild critical infrastructure, restore natural flood protection and increase energy efficiency. This important legislation allows the federal government to partner directly with local leaders and non-profits to address remaining recovery challenges while building resilience to climate change, mitigating the effects of future deadly storms and confronting poverty. It also addresses the challenges faced by internally displaced, elderly, disabled, women, low income, immigrant and minority communities.
HR 2269 was introduced in the U.S. House by Representatives Zoe Lofgren (CA), Joseph Cao (LA), Charlie Melancon (LA), Gene Taylor (MS), John Conyers (MI), Barbara Lee (CA), John Lewis (GA), Peter Stark (CA), and Charlie Rangel (NY).
Learn more about the bill at http://gccwc.wordpress.com.
“The introduction--and hopefully quick passage--of the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act, is important not just for the Gulf Coast but the entire nation,” said Dr. Scott Myers Lipton of San José State University and co-founder of the Gulf Coast Civic Works Project. “This legislation, with its focus on enlisting communities and expanding opportunity provides the Obama Administration and Congress with an effective new model for disaster recovery and infrastructure development.”
Roberto Garcia-Ceballos, a SJSU senior Sociology major added, "Students on over 50 college campus across the nation have been advocating for almost three years for the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act. Let's hope that with the new Obama Administration and Congress, the citizens of the Gulf Coast will not have to wait any longer to rebuild their schools, hospitals, and parks."
Almost four years after Hurricane Katrina, our nation’s largest natural disaster, America’s Gulf Coast remains a domestic human rights crisis. As we approach the 2009 Hurricane Season beginning June 1st, levees remains vulnerable, tens of thousands of people have not been able to return home, schools, hospitals and transportation infrastructure remains damaged, and residents continue to struggle for access to affordable housing and living wage jobs.
“Nonprofit and community groups have been the heroic leaders of the citizen-led Gulf Coast recovery. The Gulf Coast Civic Works Act will efficiently allocate funds for job creation and infrastructure development, two significant recovery needs, by avoiding layers of governmental red tape and dispersing funds directly to the entities, regardless of sector, which are ready to do the work,” said Jainey Bavishi, director of Equity & Inclusion Campaign, a coalition of organizations working on recovery across Alabama, Louisiana Mississippi, and Texas.
“Passing HR 2269 would be a bold stand for the fundamental rights of displaced and low-income Gulf Coast residents,” said Monika Kalra Varma, Director, Robert F. Kennedy Center for Human Right. “The right to participate in recovery, to return home with dignity and safety, and to decent work opportunities – these are the basic human rights that we have denied survivors of hurricanes Katrina and Rita for too long.”
Marking the beginning of the 2009 Hurricane Season, on May 30th - June 1st the Gulf Coast Civic Works Campaign will be bringing 400 advocates to Washington D.C. for training and meetings with members of Congress and the new Administration advocating for this critical legislation. For more information on how to participate in these events and support the legislation please visit: http://gccwc.wordpress.com
Jainey Bavishi, E&I Campaign, Jainey@equityandinclusion.org
Rhonda Jackson, Oxfam America, email@example.com
Jeffrey Buchanan, RFK Center, firstname.lastname@example.org
Gulf Coast Civic Works Campaign partner organizations include:
ACT All Congregations Together
Alabama Appleseed Center for Law & Justice, Inc.
Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America
Bay Area Women Coalition, Inc.
Bayou Grace Community Services
BISCO Bayou Interfaith Shared Community Organizing
BIT Bayou Interfaith Together
CDC 58:12, inc.
Center for Ethical Living and Social Justice Renewal
Churches Supporting Churches
Clergy Strategic Alliances, LLC
Commission on Stewardship of the Environment, Louisiana Interchurch Conference
Common Ground Health Clinic
Common Ground Relief, Inc.
COPE Congregations Organizing People for Equality
Dando la Mano / Extending a Hand
Desire Street Ministries NOLA
Disciples Justice Action Network (Disciples of Christ)
Episcopal Network for Economic Justice
Equity and Inclusion Campaign
First Pilgrims Baptist JEDC-HDM
First Unitarian Universalist Church of New Orleans, Social Justice Team
Franciscan Action Network
Friends Committee on National Legislation
FUEL Faith United for Empowerment and Leadership
Gert Town Revival Initiative, Inc.
Global Green USA
Gulf Coast Civic Works Project
Gulf Restoration Network
Holy Cross Neighborhood Association
Hope Community Development Agency
Institute for Human Rights and Responsibilities Inc.
Institute of Women & Ethnic Studies
Jewish Council for Public Affairs
Jewish Reconstructionist Federation
Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
Louisiana Conference of The UMC Disaster Reponses, Inc
Lower Ninth Ward Center for Sustainable Engagement and Development
Maria Iñamagua Campaign for Justice
May Day New Orleans
Mennonite Central Committee-New Orleans
Minnesota Tenants Union
Minnesota-New Orleans Solidarity Committee
Mississippi Center for Justice
Mississippi Coast Interfaith Disaster Task Force
Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance
Mississippi Low Income Child Care Initiative
Moore Community House
MPOWER Mississippi Poultry Workers for Equality and Respect
MQVN Community Development Corporation
National Council of Churches
National Council of Jewish Women
National Economic and Social Rights Initiative
National Employment Law Project
National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference
National Lawyers Guild - Minnesota Chapter
National Policy and Advocacy Council on Homelessness (NPACH)
NETWORK, a National Catholic Social Justice Lobby
New Orleans East Cooperative Parish
New Orleans Institute
New Orleans Neighborhood Development Collaborative
New Voices, Academy for Educational Development
Northside Neighbors for Justice
Oak Park Civic Association
Pax Christi USA
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Washington Office
Providence Community Housing
Puentes New Orleans, Inc.
Renaissance Neighborhood Development Corporation
Retired Senior Volunteer Program
Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights
Samuel Dewitt Proctor Conference
Sierra Club, Delta Chapter
Soria City Civic Organization
Special Commission on the Just Rebuilding of the Gulf Coast, National Council of Churches
St. Bernard Project
Student Hurricane Network
Survivors Village New Orleans
Terrebonne Readiness & Assistance Coalition – TRAC
Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services, (t.e.j.a.s.)
The Episcopal Church
The Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana Office of Disaster Response
The Latino Leadership Circle
The Presbytery of South Louisiana Recovery
The Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association
Turkey Creek Community Initiatives
Union of Black Episcopalians
Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations
United Hearts Community Action Agency, Inc.
Universalist Unitarian Service Committee
Women In Construction, Moore Community House
Workers Emergency Relief Campaign
Youth Inspirational Connection, Inc.