Central Texas Religious Leaders to Launch Immigration Campaign

 Religious leaders from multiple denominations will launch an interfaith campaign for comprehensive immigration reform

Tuesday, June 18, 2013 at 10am

at St. Ignatius Catholic Church on 126 W. Oltorf Street.  

The interfaith prayer service and press conference, organized by key leaders from religious denominations across Central Texas, will feature a common statement on shared principles for immigration reform and strategy to encourage legislators in Washington to vote for reform.  

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Austin Interfaith Defends Affordable Housing Construction

“If Oak Creek doesn’t remain affordable housing, [Landin] will have to move in with her mother in Bastrop.  Principal Robertson says continuity is key for low-income families.

‘Constant change is not a friend for Title One families,’ Robertson says. ‘Nor is it for students to jump from school to school. That upheaval — some of our most successful families will be thrown into I don’t know what kind of abyss.’

Members of the Travis Heights community are also concerned the school will lose its diverse student population. Minerva Skeith is a Travis Heights parent and member of the local community group, Austin Interfaith.”

For One Austin School, Funding Hangs on Affordable Housing, KUT News

Presentation and Exchange at City Hall, City of AustinMay 13, 2013

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Austin Interfaith & Worker's Defense Project Calls on City to Enforce Own Rules on Economic Incentives & Construction Wages

AAS - Labor advocates ask court to step into Marriott dispute“The Austin-based Workers Defense Project is asking the courts to step into its wage dispute with the developers of the downtown Austin J.W. Marriott hotel under construction....

‘Developers need to keep their promises to taxpayers and workers, and the city must enforce its own rules,’ said Kurt Cadena-Mitchell, a leader of Austin Interfaith, a multi-congregation group pushing the city to establish a standard above minimum wage on construction projects that are granted economic development deals by the city.”  [Photo: Alberto Martinez, Austin American Statesman]

Labor Advocates Ask Court to Step into Marriott DisputeAustin American Statesman

West / Southwest IAF

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Capital IDEA Carves Out Career Paths in Austin

“Representatives from Austin Interfaith and the local business community founded Capital IDEA in 1998, and Steven Jackobs has been heading the organization ever since. Under his direction, the group has helped support, train and find careers for hundreds of Central Texas workers and their families.  Capital IDEA – the IDEA stands for Investing in Development and Employment of Adults – works closely with unemployed or underemployed workers to identify a viable and fruitful career path. It’s a rigorous process that’s designed to ensure that workers are committed to the training and completing it….”

 

Capital IDEA Leads Clients to Career Path, Austin American Statesman

 

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Leaders Celebrate Legislative Reprieve on Living Wages

Sheets’ decision to focus on other legislation pleased Austin Interfaith, a coalition of congregations and social justice groups that has been pushing for the living-wage requirement. At the organization’s request, members of its Dallas-area counterpart and representatives of the Dallas affiliate of the Workers Defense Project met with Sheets, asking him to drop his legislation and citing, among other reasons, a desire for local control in such matters, said Kurt Cadena-Mitchell, an Austin Interfaith leader.

"I think we have a very balanced approach that is good for the city, the taxpayers, companies and contractors,” said Bob Batlan, a member of Temple Beth Shalom and Austin Interfaith involved in the living-wage discussions. “I’m pleased that (Sheets) recognizes the balanced approach.”

Legislator Backs Off Bill to Ban Living Wage RequirementAustin American Statesman

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Austin Interfaith Applauds National Instruments for Living Wage

“National Instruments Corp. won approval Thursday for $1.7 million in city of Austin incentives to support the company’s proposed expansion of 1,000 Austin jobs over the next 10 years….

The deal was praised by representatives of Austin Interfaith because the company agreed to a floor wage of $11 an hour for all jobs, including construction jobs tied to the project. The company also agreed to work with contractors to ensure that construction workers on the project will be covered by worker’s compensation insurance.”

City OK’s $1.7 Million in Incentives to National InstrumentsAustin American Statesman

 
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Austin Interfaith Leverages Republican Support for Medicaid Expansion

In the face of opposition from prominent Texas Republicans and Gov. Rick Perry, an increasing number of local government officials are urging legislators to expand Medicaid and obtain a federal funding windfall....Last week, the Travis County Commissioners Court tweaked a Feb. 19 resolution calling for a Medicaid expansion to satisfy its lone Republican member. That bipartisan support was “absolutely critical,” said Oralia Garza Cortes, a leader with Austin Interfaith, an advocacy group. Sister organizations in Dallas and Bexar counties helped pass similar resolutions.

On Tuesday, a group of Medicaid recipients and uninsured Texans is planning to rally at the Capitol in support of expanding the program."

Local Officials Lobby GOP Leaders to Rethink Medicaid Expansion, Austin American Statesman

 
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With Living Wage Requirement in Place, Travis Commissioners Discuss Incentives

“This is an opportunity to create good jobs for our families,” said Kurt Cadena-Mitchell, with Austin Interfaith, a coalition of churches, schools and local governments that is an advocate for jobs paying a living wage, among other issues....

The new jobs are believed to be part of the company’s plans to hire more technical workers and engineers to support its expanding business. The average annual wage for the new jobs is $65,000, and the lowest-paid 10 percent will make about $40,000, according to the county."

Travis Commissioners Discuss Incentives for National Instruments, Austin American Statesman

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Medicaid Expansion Would Bring $200M+ to Travis County

The court spent time Tuesday tweaking the resolution that it passed last week to satisfy its lone Republican member, Gerald Daugherty. It was approved unanimously, 5-0.  Austin Interfaith leader Oralia Garza Cortes called the bipartisan support “absolutely critical” and said that sister organizations of the advocacy group in Dallas and Bexar counties helped pass similar resolutions this month."

Medicaid Expansion Would Bring More Than $200 Million to Travis County, Commissioners Say, Austin American Statesman 

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Texas IAF Leaders Fight for Medicaid Expansion

undefined“Austin Interfaith, and the Network of Texas Organizations, convened 200 leaders from various faith traditions on the steps of the Capitol to call on Gov. Rick Perry and the Texas Legislature to expand Medicaid.

Religious leaders and clergy from throughout the state gathered at the north entrance the Capitol on Wednesday at noon to rally in support of Medicaid expansion…”

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