Action Alert: Upcoming Hearing for Sanctuary Cities Bill - March 16, 2015

On Monday, March 16, the Senate Veteran Affairs & Military Installations Subcommittee on Border Security will take public testimony on SB 185 relating to so-called "sanctuary cities."

SB 185 is similar to the sanctuary cities legislation that the Texas Legislature heard in 2011 but did not pass. Immigrant-rights groups and others refer to the Texas bill and similar legislation in other states as "Show Me Your Papers."

The bill would prohibit cities from adopting policies designed to reassure immigrant communities that their cooperation with local law enforcement will not trigger enforcement of federal immigration laws. Read the Senate's official bill analysis.

In 2011, more than 40 Texas judicatory leaders signed on to a joint statement opposing sanctuary cities legislation, and numerous religious leaders testified against the bill in committee.

Watch video of faith leaders' testimony in 2011.

We anticipate many faith leaders will want to provide testimony at Monday's hearing. If you are planning to attend Monday's hearing, please let us know. We are happy to help with logistics or coordinate a meeting if you'd like an opportunity to connect  with other faith community representatives while you are at the Capitol.

COMMITTEE: Veteran Affairs & Military Installations, Subcommittee on Border Security 
TIME & DATE: 8:00 AM, Monday, March 16, 2015
PLACE: E1.016 (Hearing Room)

CHAIR: Senator Brian Birdwell

Can't Get to Austin on Monday?
Watch the hearing online on the Texas Senate Video Stream starting at 8AM Monday.

Call the committee at 877-274-3841 to register your position on the bill.

Request Cover Texas Now Postcards!

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TCADP Release: More than 550 Texas Faith Leaders Call for Abolition of the Death Penalty

More than 550 Texas Faith Leaders Call for Abolition of the Death Penalty

Monday, March 9, 2015

CONTACT: Kristin Houlé, Executive Director, Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (TCADP)
512-441-1808 (office); 512-552-5948 (cell);

RELEASE: Senate proposal would burden disadvantaged Texans and property taxpayers

For more information contact Bee Moorhead @ 512-636-3135

Texas Impact

Senate proposal would burden disadvantaged Texans and property taxpayers

AUSTIN—In response to Lt. Governor Patrick and Sen. Schwertner's letter asking federal officials for flexibility to increase burdens on current Texas Medicaid recipients, Texas Impact issued the following statement:

"Texas faith communities have a deep, historic commitment to our state’s healthcare system. Many of our hospitals retain their denominational names to this day.

We are dismayed that the Senate leadership would propose to ratchet down its already minimal support for the least of our brothers and sisters, thereby exacerbating the already onerous unfunded mandates the Legislature places on local jurisdictions.

Texans today pay twice for our uninsured. We send income tax dollars to Washington D.C.—dollars that the federal government intends to send back to cover uninsured Texans, but which state leaders have steadfastly refused. 

Because lawmakers refuse to accept the repatriation of our income taxes, Texans must pay for charity care at local hospitals through property taxes. In fact, a 2013 report by former Deputy Comptroller Billy Hamilton estimated that hospital district taxpayers absorb more than $2 billion in local health care costs. Senate leaders have indicated that property tax relief is a priority—but the fastest way to reduce local property taxes would be to draw down available federal funds to provide health insurance for low-income Texans.

Instead, Senate leaders seem to be headed in the opposite direction. If legislators are successful in tightening restrictions for existing Medicaid recipients—who are almost exclusively children, the aged, and those with disabilities—they will only increase demands on local systems while making life harder for millions of our most challenged neighbors."


New WCI and CPRI VISTA Positions Now Available

New VISTA Positions available with CPRI and the Welcoming Communities Initiative

Welcoming Communities Initiative (WCI) Community Engagement Specialist

Texas Impact is currently recruiting AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers interested in spearheading projects to help meet the needs of a growing population of unaccompanied minor immigrants in Texas, including providing support to the caregivers of this vulnerable population.

As part of this effort, the Welcoming Communities Initiative (WCI) hopes to establish and support a network of community and faith-based organizations already engaged in addressing humanitarian crises, and the current crisis of unaccompanied minors in Texas in particular.  The AmeriCorps VISTA WCI Community Engagement Specialist will identify unmet needs of vulnerable populations, bring leaders of differing religious traditions together, and establish protocols, materials, and processes for assistance.

CPRI Faith Community Conference Call February 27

Fri, 02/27/2015 - 11:00am - 12:00pm

Join us for our February Community Partner Faith Discussion, a monthly conference call where we share information, stories and best practices among congregations helping their neighbors get access to food and health care through Texas' Community Partner Recruitment Initiative.

Date: Friday, February 27
Time: 11:00AM to Noon
Dial-in: (712) 432-3066, Conference Code: 424548

We look forward to visiting with you on the call and hope you will invite people you know who might be interested.

Scott Atnip
Texas Impact Congregational Outreach Director
(512) 472-3903 (Office)
(281) 728-4593 (Cell)

Better Neighbors | February 2015: Family Financial Security

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2015 ELCA Legislative Agenda

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Texas Lutheran Legislative Days Resource Center

2015 Lutheran Legislative Event | Lutheran Legislative Agenda Now Online

Sponsored by Poverty & Justice Task Force of ELCA's Southwestern Texas Synod
Participating ELCA Synods: Southwestern Texas, Northern Texas-Northern Louisiana, Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast
Program planned by Texas Impact

Gethsemane Lutheran Church
200 W Anderson Lane  Austin, TX 78752

Lutheran Legislative Agenda

Event Agenda

Binder Resources



2015 Texas Interfaith Letter on Immigration Legislation in the 84nd Texas Legislature

As Texans of faith, we call on our Legislature to affirm the rights and inherent worth of every human being.

Read more and sign the Interfaith Letter

Better Neighbors Event in Waco, Texas | February 26, 2015

Thu, 02/26/2015 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Texas Impact is coming to Waco to talk about Consumer Finance!

Join us to discuss Consumer Finance, the Community Partners Program, and Congregational Engagement Strategies.

  • Keynote: Bee Moorhead | Executive Director, Texas Impact
  • Panel on Financial Security featuring Texas Consumer Credit Commissioner Leslie Pettijohn
  • Updates from Texas Impact staff
  • How you can help low-income Texans through the Community Partner Program

When: 7PM, February 26, 2015
Where: Antioch Baptist Church
2814 S 12th St, Waco, TX 76706

Refreshments will be provided.

Rev. Dr. Whit Bodman's Comments at Texas Muslim Capitol Day, January 29, 2015

Update: Statement from Speaker Straus

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio) today released the following statement:

"The Texas Capitol belongs to all the people of this state, and legislators have a responsibility to treat all visitors just as we expect to be treated -- with dignity and respect. Anything else reflects poorly on the entire body and distracts from the very important work in front of us."

Original Story:

Texas Impact and the Interfaith Center for Public Policy assist people of faith from Christian, Jewish and Muslim traditions to participate in the work of shaping our lives together. The voices of the faithful from every shape of religion thus belong in the statehouse.

2015 UMW Legislative Event Resource Center


Find the 2015 UMW Legislative Agenda here.

To Order Print Resources, Check Back Here.

Event Photos

Event Binder Contents

Event Presentations



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Texas Impact Interfaith Prayer Service at Capitol

For more information contact Bee Moorhead @ 512-636-3135

"We are Sisters and Brothers:"

Texas Impact Holds Interfaith Service of Public Witness at Capitol to Open Legislative Session

Video available on YouTube at 6pm CST. Email for more information.

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