Stand with Muslim Neighbors Week - March 6 - 12, 2017

Kansas Interfaith Action, in partnership with CAIR-Kansas, is encouraging congregations to participate in a week of solidarity and friendship with Muslims in their community and in our state. There are a number of suggested activities that individuals, small groups, and whole congregations can do – see below.

The current political and cultural climate has enabled increasing hostility toward religious minorities in general and Muslims in particular. Hate crimes are up, and in recent years we have also seen efforts both on the state and federal level to target Muslims legally. Yet Muslims, both immigrant and native, are vital, contributing members of our communities, entitled to the same protection and care as any other Kansans.

By participating in these events, our congregations will send a message of love and rejection of hate. We also will demonstrate to our elected officials – state and federal – that we will not stand idly by while members of our communities are discriminated against or scapegoated. 

Please let us know you're planning to participate by RSVP'ing here.

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Op-ed: "I Have an Obligation to Support Muslims"

This op-ed, by KIFA Executive Director Rabbi Moti Rieber, appeared in the February 12, 2017, edition of the Wichita Eagle. To read the original column, click here

At the beginning of last century, my great-grandparents and many others like them immigrated to the United States from Poland and Russia. They were as poor as dirt, and didn’t speak the language.

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Legislative Update 2/12/17

This legislative session has been a very busy one for KIFA. The tone of the legislature is much different than in previous years, which is not surprising, since there are a large number of moderate Republicans and Democrats serving this year. From the very start, we knew that (for the first time since I've been around), we might be advocating for positive policy changes, as opposed to just trying to stop terrible things from happening, as has been the case in recent years.

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KIFA Joins with Crescent Peace Society in Opposition to "Muslim Ban" Executive Orders

(Overland Park, KS, 1/30/2017) -- Kansas Interfaith Action today joined with The Crescent Peace Society (CPS), a Kansas City area interfaith organization, and other area groups in opposing President Trump’s “Muslim Ban” Executive Orders halting the acceptance of Syrian refugees and restricting immigration and travel from several Muslim majority nations, including Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.

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"Hundreds of Kansans Throng State Capitol for 'Kansas People's Agenda' Rally"

Hundreds of Kansas residents packed the state Capitol on Jan. 11 to demand a Kansas People's Agenda. 

The Kansas People’s Agenda is a coalition of organizations and individuals representing a 15-piece program delving into health care, racism, voting rights, religious freedom, education, immigration, disability rights, gun policy, indigenous justice, child protection, gay rights and other areas of public policy.

Pictures and links to press coverage can be found inside. 

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2017 Legislative Agenda

KIFA's policies are shaped by the values of our diverse faiths, which connect us to the scriptural concerns for justice, peace, and human dignity. Rooted in faith, we join hands across difference to work for moral and effective public policy in Kansas.

Here are KIFA's priorities for the 2017 legislative session:  

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Join 1,000+ Kansans at the Kansas Peoples Agenda Rally - 1/11/17

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Can you help us keep making a difference in 2017?

To make your tax-deductible donation to Kansas Interfaith Action, click here.

In Jewish tradition there's a midrash (a rabbinic explication of a Biblical story) that says that when the children of Israel were at the Sea, with the barrier in front of them and the raging army of Pharaoh coming up fast behind them, the people panicked (naturally) and even Moses didn't know what to do. A lone man, Nahshon, in a singular act of faith, walked out into the Sea – to his knees, to his waist, to his nose – before the Sea parted and the Israelites were able to make their way to freedom.  

When we began Kansas Interfaith Action at the start of this year we knew we were trying to fill an important role in Kansas public life: as the voice of faith- and conscience-based public policy advocacy in our state. We knew such a voice was desperately needed, given where the state was and how the voice of faith had been largely coopted by the political right. What we didn't know is what would happen next. But like Nahshon, despite the uncertainly, we walked in.

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KIFA Stands with Standing Rock

Many of us have been following with great interest the resistance of Native Americans in North Dakota to the Dakota Access Pipeline. For the crime of defending their lands and waters - not to mention the climate of all of us -- the camp at Standing Rock has been met with militarized policing in the service of private gain. All over the world - in the forests of Brazil, in the boreal forests of Canada, and here, in the Indian lands of North Dakota - it is only the bravery of indigenous peoples that is holding back the continued development of fossil infrastructure that is literally killing our planet. 

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Announcing "Kansans Against Campus Carry"

On July 1, 2017, a law will come into effect allowing conceal-carry firearms on public college and university campuses in Kansas. In keeping with previous legislation, no training or permitting will be required. This policy, known as "campus carry," is a remarkably short-sighted policy, and Kansas Interfaith Action is taking a lead position in organizing opposition to its implementation. 

 

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