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CAIR-Houston/DFW, to Join 100+ Faith Leaders and Organizations in Releasing Join Letter in Support of the Texas George Floyd Act

(Houston, TX, 4/6/21) – Tomorrow, Wednesday, April 7, the Houston and DFW chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, and Faith in Texas along with faith leaders across the State of Texas will be joining in a virtual press conference in support of the Texas George Floyd Act.

More than 100 faith leaders and organizations from diverse faiths and regions of our state have signed on in support of the Texas George Floyd Act (HB 88) and all of its components. 

WHEN: Wednesday, April 7, 2021, 10:30 am

WHERE: FB Live at https://www.facebook.com/cair.tx.houston/live/

COALITION: The George Floyd Act is supported by a growing statewide coalition of more than 70 groups. More information about the coalition can be found at its website at txgeorgefloydact.com

“Re-imagining safety in Texas requires boldness and a prophetic vision that sees this state as a place where all people feel safe. As an organization that walks with various individuals and communities from all faith backgrounds, we believe that every human being is born with inherent worth. Every human being should be treated with dignity even if they have an encounter with the police. The George Floyd Act gets us closer to addressing the issues that surround over-incarceration of people, particularly for non-jailable offenses. The passing of this legislation gets us closer to that prophetic vision.” – Rev. L. Robin Murray, Lead Organizer, Faith in Texas

“The George Floyd Act is long overdue for Texas and we are calling our faith leaders to join one of our State’s most important calls to action of our time by standing for justice. Now is the time for our Texas legislature to pass meaningful, common-sense laws that will hold law enforcement accountable and make our communities and their families safer. Racial profiling and brutal abuses by police are a reality that disproportionately impacts Black, Indigenous, people of color and low-income people in the state of Texas and across our nation. To work on building unity and healing, we must begin by honoring George Floyd’s memory by working in solidarity across all faiths by supporting true reform that delivers that.” Ambreen Hernandez, Director of Operations, CAIR-Houston 

“Texas Impact supports the George Floyd Act because the power of the State should be used to strengthen minority communities and democratic institutions—not to protect white privilege. Our faith traditions teach that all people should have equal access, equal opportunity, and equal protection under the law because all people are created in God’s image.” Bee Moorhead, Executive Director, Texas Impact

TEXT OF LETTER:

The people of Texas need to know that many faith leaders and theologians from diverse religious traditions support The George Floyd Act. If you are an ordained member of the clergy, professional religious educator, theologian or staff member at a religious institution, please lend your name and support for The George Floyd Act and encourage your fellow faith leaders to do the same by sharing this link.  

We, the undersigned clergy and religious leaders from across Texas, draw upon our personal faith and moral convictions to support the Texas George Floyd Act (H.B. No. 88).

We are leaders of various Texas faith communities who have walked with thousands of people through life’s glory, tragedy, and mistakes. Some of the people with whom we have ministered have been harassed or threatened by police; others have had family members killed during an interaction with police. We have mourned senseless deaths at the hands of law enforcement. We have stood in solidarity, hearts to hearts, with families affected by these losses.

George Floyd’s murder by Minneapolis police awakened many of us the simple fact that Black men and women have justified reasons to live in fear for their lives because of the way policing works in America and Texas. Spouses are afraid for their husbands. Black parents are afraid for their sons and daughters. Black grandparents are afraid for their grandsons.

As people of faith, we yearn for peace. But peace demands righteousness and justice.  We stand united in the belief that this moment, and George Floyd’s death, demands meaningful police reform. In this critical moment, we are called to address our policing culture at the very roots, not only for the Black community, or even the community as a whole but for police officers as well.

The Texas George Floyd Act is a strong bill and a good first step towards addressing the injustice that George Floyd experienced at the hands of police and that many Texans experience every day. It is about correcting things that we know are wrong. It is about safety for all people. It is about peace, justice, strong communities and safe neighborhoods.

Our belief in the value and protection of all people are grounded in our religious principles.  We believe that this means embracing the Texas George Floyd Act.

Supporting Individuals and Local Organizations

Gerald FrankCatholic Priest
Carl F. Hunter II, M.DivAfrican Methodist Episcopal Church
Rabbi Joshua R. S. FixlerRabbi — Congregation Emanu El, Houston
Imam Dr. Omar SuleimanValley Ranch Islamic Center
Joy AndersonFirst United Methodist Church, Richardson, Texas
Rabbi David SegalTexas Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism 
Nancy KastenFaith Commons/Reform Rabbi/Chief Relationship Officer
Collin PackerGreenville Oaks Church of Christ/Lead Minister
Rabbi Dan GordonTemple Beth Torah
Roderick McNeelyPresident BBAM Foundation
Rabbi Shaul OsadcheyJewish
Amy W MoorePC(USA). Reverend
Albert PhillippSan Felipe de Jesus Catholic Church volunteer
Rev. Mark SkrabaczFirst Unitarian Universalist Church/Unitarian Universalist/ Minister
Rev. Chuck FreemanTexas Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry Executive Director
Addae KrabaMinister of Unitarian Universalist New Braunfels
Rev. Erin WalterWildflower Church, affiliated community minister
Rev. Dr. Colin BossenSenior Minister, First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston
Kate McCartySan Marcos Universal Unitarian Fellowship
Catherine VanceBay Area UU Church
Sonja MillerTexas Freedom Network/Outreach and Faith Director
Carrie Holley-HurtFirst UU Church of Austin Social Action Chair
Carmen RumbautLive Oak Unitarian Universalist
Carol BurrusFirst Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston- Director of Religious Community
Alex KeimigFamily Ministry Coordinator with First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston
Rev. D. Scott CooperAssistant Minister of Congregational Life, First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston
Rev. Dan KingMinister Emeritus, First UU Church of Houston
Anthony O’Connorcatholic
Chris JimmersonFirst Unitarian Universalist Church of Austin/Minister for Program Development
Rev. Meg BarnhouseFirst Unitarian Universalist Church of Austin
Judy McClenaghanA Course in Miracles
Pamela L. Johnson MDThe Brazos Unitarian Universalist Church, Chair Ministry for Social Justice and the Environment
Sarah PrickettMinister, Northwoods Unitarian Universalist Church
Syed Farhat AbbasResident Scholar
Bruce WilsonEpiscopal Priest
Jeff BoxellBay Area UU Church Service and Justice Ministry lead
Rev. Christina HockmmanUnitarian Universalist Church of Corpus Christi
Jack YoungkinTexas UU Justice Ministry/Board of Directors
Rabbi Oren HayonCongregation Emanu El
Joel WoitonTexas Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry
Pamela SilkCongregation Emanu El/Jewish/Rabbi
Rev. Phillip DiekeWhite Rock UMC – Associate Pastor
Dan De LeonFriends Congregational Church, United Church of Christ
Sylvester Smith,Jr.New Zion Missionary Baptist Church
Rev. Dr. Elizabeth K NashAssociation Minister, Heart of Texas Association, United Church of Christ,
Kimberly Herzog CohenTemple Emanu-El
Lisa StahlRev. United Church of Christ
Rabbi Alan FreedmanTemple Beth Shalom
Travis MeierPeace Lutheran Church, College Station, TX
Sam Hill IIINorth Bryan New Birth Baptist Church/Pastor
Chelsea McCutchinChristian Church (Disciples of Christ)/ Minister of Education and Community Engagement
Jerry CarpenterUnited Church of Christ
Rev. Manda AdamsFirst Community Church/ UCC/ Pastor
Rev. Amelia FulbrightUniversity Baptist Church
Rev. Thomas McCrackenChristian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Rev Dr Mary WilsonThe United Church of Christ
Pastor Jerry WirtleyELCA Campus Ministry to the Brazos Valley
Rev Charles StarkRetired UCC Clergy
Rev. Dr. Sid Hall, IIITrinity Church of Austin/UCC & UMC/Lead Minister
Sheri AllenCantor
Al GilesSpiritual follower
Rev. Dr. Russell W. DaltonBrite Divinity School
Deborah Simon
Rev. Donna RenfroUnitarian Universalist minister -Self Employed
Nancy MossmanElder of Río Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church
Carolyn NielandCigna
Thomas L. NielandUUFHC
Eleanor ColvinFirst UMC College Station — Pastor
Jo HudsonUnited Church of Christ
Cecilia Lynn Johnson
Caren EdelsteinNational Council of Jewish Women
The Rev. Lacy LargentPriest, St. Francis Episcopal Church
The Rev Dr Edward J KernPastor, Trinity Lutheran Church (ELCA)
Rev Dr. Neil ThomasCathedral of Hope United Church of Christ
Rev. Kate McGeePresbyterian Pastor
Rev. Michelle LaGraveEmerson UU Church
Rev. LyAnna JohnsonLife in the City UMC/Lead Pastor
Rabbi Nancy KastenFaith Commons
Daniel UtleyRabbi, Temple Emanu-El
Wally ButtsPastor, UMC
Rev Laurie AndersonMidway Hills Christian Church, Senior Minister
Cathy SweeneyAssoc Pastor, Arapaho United Methodist Church
Rev Karen FryCenter for Spiritual Living Dallas/ Centers for Spiritual Living / Co- Spiritual Director
Ayman KabireIslamic Society of Greater Houston/Board Member/President/
Stacey D. BrownElev8 Movement
Imam F. Qasim ibn Ali KhanMasjid At-Tawhid / Imam & Director
Imam Daniel HernandezISGH- Pearland Islamic Center
Eugene W. FarooqMasjid Warithuddeen Mohammed
Marv KnoxFellowship Southwest
Emma DavisTexas Impact
Almas MuscatwallaFaith Forward Dallas @ Thanks-Giving Square
Rev. Phillip DiekeWhite Rock UMC – Associate Pastor
Rev. Eric FolkerthKessler Park UMC
Rev. Eric FolkerthKessler Park UMC
Michael SeifertReverend (retired)
Joyce HamiltonRuling Elder, Treasure Hills Presbyterian Church
Cindy Andrade JohnsonMethodist Deaconess
Julie SmithUMC Deaconess
Brian LightnerChristian Methodist Episcopal (C.M.E.) Church
Cindy SamuelsenPreston Hollow Presbyterian, elder
Renee HayesUnited Methodist
Anthony oconnorSan felipe
Rev. Lydia MuñozSwarthmore United Methodist Church – Lead Pastor
Ann CassProyecto Azteca
Donna l BurkhartUnited Methodist Women 

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CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

Faith in Texas is a multi-faith, multi-racial grassroots organization that unites people and communities of faith to address the systemic racial injustices that plague our communities. One of the common tenets that threads through the diversity of our faith traditions is being accountable for affirming and protecting the inherent dignity held by all people. In part, it is the failure of that same tenet in our systems, anchored in racial prejudices, that allowed the lives of George Floyd and countless other Texans to be devastated and ultimately stolen. We need interventions across the state that address current pathways for law enforcement officers to be free of accountability when they cause harm. The George Floyd Act seeks to begin that long march towards valuing and protecting all people.  

Texas Impact is a non profit that exists to put faith into action. They equip faith leaders and their congregations with information and opportunities, and outreach tools to educate their communities and engage with lawmakers on pressing public policy issues.

CONTACTS: 

Ambreen Hernandez, CAIR-Houston, 973-495-0976

Rev. Robin Murray, Faith in Texas, 

Bee Moorehead, Texas Impact, 512-472-3903 

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