How We Can Create A Better World

As social justice advocates, our relationship with “Independence Day” is “complicated” to say the least. Clearly the liberty and justice promised in founding documents of the U.S. have never been realized, and those same documents contain structural inequality. So much has been written about this. This year some of us will be revisiting Langston Hughes’...
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On June 18th, the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) launched their national HIV is Not a Crime initiative, focused on modernizing HIV-specific laws across the country. This initiative is in partnership with The Counter Narrative Project, Positive Women’s Network, The Sero Project, Transgender Law Center, the US People Living with HIV Caucus, and Gilead Sciences,...
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The 2020 Legislative Session came to an end on May 15th, amidst the special challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite having floor debate time reduced by about six weeks due to the public health emergency, 51 bills became “Truly Agreed and Finally Passed” (TAFP) during the abbreviated session. We were disappointed to see many of...
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Happy Juneteenth! Empower Missouri is among organizations that has begun a discussion about amending our personnel manual to create a paid staff holiday for Juneteenth. We have not adopted that policy yet, but the deliberative process is just one of the many ways that our staff and Board are attempting to fulfill the mandate of...
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Whether you have been part of the Empower Missouri advocacy network for a long time or just joined our mailing list this week, there has never been a more important time to be a social justice advocate. Our planet is rocked by three crises simultaneously that interact with each other with synergistic power: The novel...
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Note: The following blog contains links to stories that include photos and descriptions of actions that are traumatizing. Recently, I have heard a number of people speculate that living through the COVID-19 pandemic is bringing uncommon unity to people in the U.S. that “we are all in the same boat now.” Despite the longing that...
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In the past few months, we have all watched in shock and disbelief as precious lives have been taken from African Americans as a result of police brutality. We are outraged by these tragic events! The horrific killing of George Floyd, preserved on video, the police shooting of Breonna Taylor and the beating of Marvia...
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On May 15, in the final hours of Legislative Session 2020, the Missouri General Assembly Truly Agreed and Finally Passed the Senate Substitute for Senate Bill 600 (SS SB 600). This legislation utilizes several criminal justice policies that have been tried repeatedly and proven to be costly failures: imposition of mandatory minimums increasing the felony...
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Use this link to Sign up for the Smart Sentencing Coalition. Access the meeting on your computer https://zoom.us/j/194570677 Meeting ID: 194 570 677 Access the meeting on your phone DIAL: (929)205-6099 Meeting ID: 194570677# Further Reading: Parson signs bevy of criminal justice, public safety bills: ‘We have to do a better job’ – By Kaitlyn Schallhorn at...
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Use this link to Sign up for the Smart Sentencing Coalition. Access the meeting on your computer https://zoom.us/j/194570677 Meeting ID: 194 570 677 Access the meeting on your phone DIAL: (929)205-6099 Meeting ID: 194570677# Further Reading: Parson signs bevy of criminal justice, public safety bills: ‘We have to do a better job’ – By Kaitlyn Schallhorn at...
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