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Wed Sep 21, 2011

Probing Pr. William foreclosures, group sees widespread irregularities, ‘robo-signed’ papers -The Washington Post

Lenders may have foreclosed on hundreds of homeowners in Prince William County, Manassas and Manassas Park using unreliable, “robo-signed” documents, according to a report by the group Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement.

Wed Sep 7, 2011

New interfaith group seeks peace, justice: -Cleveland Plain Dealer

On Monday, our nation will celebrate Labor Day. It will be marked by parades and picnics, and here in Cleveland, by the air show and the 10th annual Peace Show. With unemployment hovering around 9 percent and higher in cities like Cleveland, growing numbers of uninsured workers, collective bargaining under attack, and predictions of another recession, some might ask what there is to celebrate on a day that honors the American worker.

Fri Aug 26, 2011

Group Organizes Litmus Test For 4 Mayoral Candidates -Baltimore NBC WBAL TV

A candidates forum sponsored by Baltimore City's oldest and largest faith-based organization drew four candidates on Thursday.  

Fri Aug 26, 2011

In debate, mayoral candidates vow to double youth jobs -The Baltimore Sun

Candidates vying to be Baltimore's next mayor promised Thursday evening to double funding for after school programs, create 1,000 summer jobs for youth and renovate or rebuild all of the city's schools.  Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, former city planning director Otis Rolley and State Sen. Catherine E. Pugh vowed to support an agenda drafted by the interfaith coalition BUILD that centers on the needs of children and the city's outlying neighborhoods.

Thu Aug 18, 2011

Americans Facing More Inequality, More Debt and Now More Trouble? -PBS News Hour

Did America's record-high level of economic inequality in 2007 help cause the financial crisis of 2008? With Americans' borrowing back on the rise and signs that economic inequality is growing, could there be another financial crisis in the near future? Paul Solman continues his series of reports on U.S. economic inequality.

Tue Aug 16, 2011

U.S. Bank steps up The bank says it will commit more than $16 million to the effort to stabilize Milwaukee neighborhoods hard hit by foreclosure. -Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

  U.S. Bank did the right thing last week in announcing that it would commit more than $16 million to help neighborhoods in Milwaukee hammered by foreclosures.  The bank is the fourth to pledge money to stabilize housing efforts in the wake of the housing crash. Bank of America, Deutsche Bank and Wells Fargo have pledged $15.2 million to the Milwaukee Rising initiative started by the community organization Common Ground. The effort is focused on the Sherman Park neighborhood.

Fri Aug 5, 2011

Maryland tuition law must be defended -The Baltimore Sun

Regarding the recent article about the lawsuit over the Maryland Dream Act ("Vote on tuition bill faces lawsuit," Aug. 2), I believe democracy should be upheld.

I was one of hundreds in attendance when the law was heavily debated in the State House. Over the last year,Maryland Industrial Areas Foundation has committed itself to true grassroots organizing and building a diverse base of African-American, Caribbean Americans, Latinos, and others who support the law. Our organizing culminated when we turned out a multitude of diverse supporters to witness the passage of the tuition bill in April. I'll never forget the rainbow of faces, both immigrant and American-born, unified on that day.

Sun Jul 31, 2011

Coming Together to Pray, and Also to Find Reduced-Rate Energy Deals -New York Times

WASHINGTON — Like manna from heaven, thousands of dollars in new revenue is raining on a group of congregations here from the unlikeliest of sources: the utility bill.

Thu Jul 28, 2011

Family of dead 67-year-old woman blame moldy living conditions in public housing -NY Daily News

The family of a churchgoing South Bronx grandmother who died last month of lung cancer is slamming the city agency responsible for her rotting, unhealthy apartment.

Maria Vasquez passed away June 10 after begging the New York City Housing Authority for lasting repairs and a transfer to another apartment.

Fri Jul 22, 2011

In Maryland, an immigration battle redux -LA Times

A new law allowing in-state college tuition for some illegal immigrants is suspended until it can go before voters next year. In the meantime, both sides build up huge campaigns to persuade the public.

Mon Jul 4, 2011

Home Is Where the Mold Is -New York Times

Sarita Latchman, a vibrant 42-year-old mother and former parks worker, has a sound like a baby’s rattle at the back of her throat. Which is not surprising, as her apartment in the Jefferson Houses in East Harlem is speckled with soot-black mold. A thick carpet of it runs down her bathroom wall and across the ceiling of her children’s bedrooms. Rub it and the spores float, landing on sink tops and children’s hair. They also journey through Ms. Latchman’s nasal passageway into her lungs...

Thu Jun 30, 2011

Freezes sought on health insurance rates -Boston Globe

As lawmakers and industry leaders toil over plans to fundamentally change how health care is paid for in Massachusetts, two leading consumer groups are asking them to give ratepayers a one-year reprieve from premium increases. At a noontime rally at the State House today, Health Care for All and the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization plan to call for a 2012 freeze on base premium rates that have jumped sharply in the past decade. The idea is to pressure decision makers, particularly insurers and hospitals, to hash out a long-term plan at a quicker pace...

Sun Jun 19, 2011

Common Ground builds on success with banks to address foreclosures -Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Common Ground started small three years ago, working to get better lighting for some streets in the Sherman Park neighborhood, pushing for more summer youth jobs and helping restore bus service to the food pantry in Waukesha. But it became David aiming at Goliath when it took on major U.S. banks and world powerhouse Deutsche Bank as part of its campaign to hold banks accountable for the havoc the foreclosure crisis has wreaked on the city of Milwaukee. At first, the banks balked. But the group kept pushing, even flying to Frankfurt, Germany, to the shareholders meeting of Deutsche Bank to confront its CEO, Josef Ackermann. Persistence paid off...

Tue Jun 14, 2011

Congregations Convene for a Greater Cleveland -Cleveland Plain Dealer

Slammed by foreclosures, persistent unemployment and poverty, Northeast Ohio can use all the help it can get, spiritual and secular. So the creation of the Greater Cleveland Congregations, a coalition of 40 local religious congregations, could be heaven-sent. The organization, a patchwork of faiths from both city and suburban congregations, promises to put aside theological, geographical and racial differences to concentrate on activism that can improve lives in Greater Cleveland...

Tue Jun 14, 2011

Bronx public housing tenants demand NYCHA repair and improve 'sub-human' living conditions -NY Daily News

  South Bronx churches and public housing tenants are turning up the heat on city officials, claiming their polite requests for better service have gone nowhere.

Wed Jun 8, 2011

A collaboration of congregations in Cleveland -Cleveland Plain Dealer

Churchgoing Christians are used to hearing their ministers quote from Matthew 25:35: For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you invited me in.

However, most Christians never get to hear Jesus' message delivered by a rabbi -- and one who quotes Islamic text, too:

One should like for his neighbor what he loves for himself...

Tue Jun 7, 2011

Multi-faith coalition shares vision of Greater Cleveland -Cleveland Plain Dealer

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- A newly organized multi-faith coalition of 40 different religious congregations and community groups unveiled a coming-out Monday -- in the words of Rabbi Robert Nosanchuk -- to "rise against the tide of a despairing Cleveland." The seeds of the new coalition, called Greater Cleveland Congregations, were sown in September at an organizational meeting attended by 350 people at Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple in Beachwood where Nosanchuk is senior rabbi...

Mon Jun 6, 2011

Greater Cleveland Congregegations pledges to use interfaith muscle for social justice -WCBN Ideastream

During her tenure as Dean of Cleveland’s Trinity Cathedral over the past decade, Tracey Lind has seen interfaith groups come and go. Mostly go. Until recently, few suburban congregations saw the need to collaborate with city churches. And collaborations between Muslims and Jews were not common. Lind claims the newly formed Greater Cleveland Congregations, or GCC, aims to change that. She says the recession has prompted more groups to work together...

Mon Jun 6, 2011

Interfaith service hopes to improve city -WEWS ABC 5

CLEVELAND - An estimated two thousand people packed an interfaith service Monday night in Cleveland with the goal of making the city a "more just and prosperous place." Greater Cleveland Congregations united people from 40 different churches, synagogues, mosques, and neighbored centers at the Masonic Auditorium...

Thu Apr 7, 2011

Clergyman says immigration key to growth -Boston Globe

Urging minority groups to unite and assert their influence on policy makers in Massachusetts and across the country, the head of a prominent interfaith group quoted Scripture and drew cheers at a State House rally yesterday.

“When William Bradford and the Mayflower pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock in 1620, they did not bring any immigration papers,’’ said the Rev. Hurmon Hamilton, president of the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization. “When John Winthrop arrived in 1630 with the next wave of New Englanders … they were not met with a wall built to keep them out...

Wed Apr 6, 2011

New deal reached on chromium cleanup at Jersey City Site -New York Times

JERSEY CITY — Some 25 years ago, Ellen Wright was driving home through her neighborhood of single-family wood-frame houses here when she noticed that the streets were slick with “green water.”

“It was a terrible thing,” said Mrs. Wright, now 77, recalling her unease.

The  liquid turned out to be runoff from the site of a former chrome production plant that operated for decades in Jersey City in Hudson County, once a major center for the nation’s chromium ore processing and manufacturing industry. Residents like Mrs. Wright, who were already organizing through their churches to demand better police protection and other basic community services, decided to take on the polluters...

Thu Mar 17, 2011

Muslim Cultural Center Appears Near Approval -New York Times

A long battle over a proposed mosque in DuPage County is approaching a turning point, and although anti-Muslim sentiment and resistance to mosques in the Chicago area are hardly going away, Muslims appear to be winning this time.

Wed Mar 9, 2011

Immigrant in-state tuition bill moves forward -AP

ANNAPOLIS — A panel of Maryland senators is hoping a series of nighttime tweaks will help shepherd a plan to grant in-state tuition to illegal immigrants through the Senate.

The Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee voted Tuesday night to clean up the plan to grant illegal immigrants the same tuition rates at state-run universities that Maryland residents pay...

Sun Mar 6, 2011

Senate to take up tuition break for undocumented students -Baltimore Sun

Legislation would start students at community college

The state Senate is poised this week to take up a controversial plan to offer discounted tuition at Maryland's public colleges and universities to students who are in the country illegally.

The legislation, which cleared the Senate education committee last week, would allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition at any of Maryland's public community colleges. After completing two years of study, they could transfer to a four-year institution and continue to pay the in-state rate...

Thu Mar 3, 2011

Living On The Edge: East New York & Bay Ridge Go Off Script City Limits -City Limits

Chapter four of "Brooklyn: The Borough Behind The Brand" visits East New York, Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst and other neighborhoods whose story over the past 20 years differs from the standard narrative of Brooklyn's growth. Eighty years ago, the land along East New York's southeastern border, now known as Spring Creek, was where the city came to an end. When people fleeing the tenements built houses in an area of East New York called New Lots, when they grew vegetables on the empty land next door and watched government paving crews lay down Linden Boulevard, Spring Creek was the land beyond that. It was the scrubby turf where their teenagers played sandlot baseball, the forbidding tall grass where the ill-intentioned stashed stolen cars, or worse...

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