RELEASE – Faith and community organizations’ letter to Gov. Ricketts urges compassion for refugees

***For Immediate Release***                          

November 24, 2015

 

Contact, Jeff Sheldon
Communications Director, Nebraska Appleseed
(402) 438-8853 (office)
(402) 840-7289 (cell)
jsheldon@neappleseed.org

Faith and community organizations send letter to Gov. Ricketts urging compassion for Refugees

Letter asks Governor to rescind request not to settle Syrian refugees in Nebraska

 

LINCOLN – Today, a group of 31 Nebraska community and faith organizations sent a letter to Governor Ricketts urging him to rescind his request to the federal government asking that Syrian refugees not be settled in Nebraska.

Copies of the letter also were sent to Nebraska’s members of Congress and all members of the Nebraska Legislature.

“In the wake of recent global tragedies, we are called to act with compassion and leadership, not fear and misplaced blame,” an excerpt of the letter reads. “We are committed to the values of our state and our nation, including equality and freedom, and stand ready to work with your administration to ensure that all refugees are welcomed, supported, and fully integrated into our community.”

“We believe it is morally unconscionable to turn our backs on Syrian refugees fleeing terror and violence,” the letter continues. “These men, women, and children are themselves victims of ISIS and must not be blamed for the very terror they are fleeing.”

The letter also urges Governor Ricketts to work with the federal government to maintain “a generous and robust resettlement program.”

Read the entire letter here

Community support for settling refugees in Nebraska has been overwhelming in the days since the Governor first requested a block of Syrian refugees.

Monday night, approximately 700 people attended two prayer vigils in Lincoln and Omaha to support Nebraska remaining a safe home to people seeking safety from violence. And last week the Great Plains United Methodist Conference announced that 35 congregations in Nebraska and Kansas were ready to host Syrian families.

These organizations have signed the letter to the Governor:

ACLU of Nebraska

Asian Community & Cultural Center (Lincoln)

Blackford Law LLC (Omaha)

Brown Immigration Law, P.C., L.L.O. (Lincoln)

Center for People in Need (Lincoln/Lancaster)

Center for Rural Affairs

Centro Hispano Comunitario de Nebraska (Columbus)

Great Plains Conference, United Methodist Church

Great Plains Immigration Rapid Response Team (Great Plains Conference)

Heartland Workers Center (Omaha)

Inclusive Communities

Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska

Ixim: Spirit of Solidarity (Omaha)

Justice for Our Neighbors – Nebraska

Latino American Commission

Latino Center of the Midlands (Omaha)

League of Women Voters of Lincoln and Lancaster County

Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska, Inc.

NAACP – Lincoln Branch

National Association of Social Workers, Nebraska Chapter

National Council of Jewish Women, Omaha Section

Nebraska Appleseed

Omaha Together One Community

Peace with Justice Ministries, Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church (Nebraska and Kansas)

Produce from the Heart (Lincoln)

Rapport International

Refugee Empowerment Center (formerly South Sudan Community Association) (Omaha)

Schlegel Center for Service and Justice at Creighton University (Omaha)

Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community Leadership Team

Unity in Action (South Sioux City)

YWCA Lincoln

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  One Reply to “RELEASE – Faith and community organizations’ letter to Gov. Ricketts urges compassion for refugees”

  1. Rev. Mr. Lauren Ekdahl
    11/24/2015 at 9:40 pm

    As the Protestant pastor who was invited to give the opening prayer at Governor Ricketts Inauguration Banquet and Ball, I implore him to remember its appeal for divine guidance to follow the impulse of the “higher angels” of our faith. The true test of belief is the congruence of actions that validate or deny our claim of faith. I believe there is consequences that visit us when we lack that congruence. I implore Governor Ricketts to restore balance to that relationship by rescinding his request.

    Pastor Lauren Ekdahl

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