New Yorkers of all faiths are compelled by our traditions to seek justice. How do we do so faithfully and effectively in a time of increasing inequality, poverty and ideological division? September 25-27, join people of faith from across New York as we learn and reflect together on how to organize, educate, advocate, and agitate for economic and racial justice in our state.
Over three days of presentations, workshops, and small group reflection, we will:
- Build connections with other justice-seeking New Yorkers from different regions and faiths
- Build knowledge of issues and movements through a moral/faith-rooted lens
- Build the capacity to do justice work through skills training and strategic reflection
- Be energized and inspired to continue working for justice - or to get involved for the first time
Onleilove (pronounced Onlylove) Alston was born and raised in East New York, Brooklyn. Currently, she is the executive director at PICO-Faith in New York, where she leads a multiracial and multifaith faith based organizing federation of 70 congregations representing 80,000 New Yorkers who are working to Build the Beloved City-where all, not some, of God’s children can live in dignity. Onleilove is also a workshop facilitator, speaker, and writer.
After receiving her bachelor’s degree in Human Development and African-American studies from Penn State University, she completed a year of service with AmeriCorps Public Allies New York. In 2011, she received her Master of Divinity and Master of Social Work degrees from Union Theological Seminary and Columbia University School of Social Work, respectively.
She is a contributing writer for Sojourners magazine, The Black Commentator, Huff Post Religion and NPR’s Onbeing blog, as well as other print and online publications. Having experienced poverty and homelessness, she has developed a compassion for people fueled by her passion for justice, and knows that the gospel is truly “good news to the poor.” Onleilove serves on Mayor Bill de Blasio's Clergy Advisory Council, the board of directors for Sojourners, ALIGN and on the advisory boards for the Women’s Organizing Network for the Micah Institute at NY Theological Seminary. A womanist Onleilove writes and lectures on the implicit bias of colorism and its impact on African-American women and leads A Women’s Theology of Liberation for the PICO Network.
Larry Cox has been working for peace, justice and human rights around the world for more than four decades. A graduate of Union Theological Seminary, he is serving as Co- Director of Kairos: The Center on Religions, Rights and Social Justice. He is also a senior consultant at Public Interest Projects, serving a new collaborative fund, the Sunrise Initiative, supporting human rights work in the United States. Cox served as Executive Director of Amnesty International USA from 2006 to 2011. In assuming leadership of AIUSA, Cox returned to the movement he had helped to develop over 14 years in a variety of positions. In 1976 he joined the organization as its first press officer. During the next nine years he established the AIUSA Program to Abolish the Death Penalty, served as Communication Director, and Deputy Executive Director. He was then appointed Deputy Secretary General at Amnesty International’s world headquarters in London. In 1990 Cox became the Executive Director of the Rainforest Foundation, an international organization working with indigenous peoples in the Brazilian Amazon to protect their rights and environment. In 1995 Cox began an 11-year term as Senior Program Officer for Human Rights at the Ford Foundation. He initiated new programs on international justice, economic, social and cultural rights, and human rights in the United States. As part of the latter work, he co- edited and co-wrote the report Close to Home: Case Studies of Human Rights Work in the US. In focusing on human rights in the United States Cox came full circle to work he did in his early years to advance peace and social justice. Active in the anti-Vietnam war movement he did organizing against the war as a GI at Ft. Campbell, KY in 1970-71. He later became News Director of the NY Pacifica Radio station, WBAI.
Ron Deutsch is Executive Director of the Fiscal Policy Institute. He has been a tireless advocate for working families for over 20 years in Albany. He led the Statewide Emergency Network for Social and Economic Security (SENSES, a statewide anti-poverty advocacy organization) for 13 years and has been the Director of FPI’s sister 501(c)(4) organization, New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness for the past 8 years. Deutsch is a graduate of the State University of New York at Albany.
He also leads an all volunteer non-profit (www.thegivingcircle.org) that works to help improve the lives of families in the Capital District, nationally and internationally.
Rosemary Rivera is the Organizing Director for Citizen Action of New York. She has been an organizer with Syracuse United Neighbors, Metro Justice, and SEIU 1199's Healthcare Education Project before coming back to Citizen Action in her current role. She has sat on numerous boards and committees in her hometown, beautiful Rochester, New York.
Rev. Kirk Laubenstein is the Executive Director of the Coalition for Economic Justice (CEJ). CEJ’s mission is to unite its member labor, faith, and community organizations to win campaigns that promote economic justice for all through building strong, diverse, sustainable communities. Laubenstein has been involved with social and economic justice issues while working with Common Councilmember David A. Rivera in the Niagara District. There he led initiatives to reinvigorate the Grant-Ferry neighborhood by promoting local business through the Grant Street Stakeholders initiative. He has served as President of the Board of Grassroots Gardens of Buffalo, a founding board member of PUSH Buffalo, and has volunteered on many other boards. In 2011, Laubenstein felt called to attend seminary. He attended Chicago Theological Seminary and graduated in 2014 with his Master's of Divinity. During seminary, he became involved in the UNITE HERE Hyatt hotel boycott and was convinced of the power of labor organizing to change people’s lives for the better.
Natasha Thompson, President & CEO of the Food Bank of the Southern Tier.
Rebecca Fuentes, Lead Organizer of the Workers' Center of Central New York.
More to be announced soon!
The conference will be held at Liverpool First United Methodist Church at 604 Oswego St. The program will run 5-9 pm Sunday, 9 am-9 pm Monday, and 9am-12:30 pm Tuesday.
Lodging is available at the Holiday Inn Syracuse-Liverpool at a reduced rate of $104/night (single) or $52/night (double). The hotel is 1.6 miles from the church and a free shuttle is available to bring participants back and forth in the morning and evening.
Full registration (including dinner Sunday, lunch and dinner Monday and lunch Tuesday) is $125.
Early registration (by August 1) is $100.
Sunday only registration (including dinner) is $30.
If you prefer to pay by check, please call 518-213-6000, ext. 6348.
Financial assistance is available to those who need it. Please do not let a lack of funds keep you from attending! To apply for a scholarship please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, phone number, a paragraph about why you want to attend the Faith for a Fair NY Conference, and the amount of assistance you are requesting.
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