Dear Friends,

The Maine State Legislature is in an intense sprint to the end of this session.  Committees have completed their work and dozens of bills are coming to the floor of the House and Senate for votes every single day.

NOW IS THE TIME FOR YOU TO CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATORS!  Let them know why you, as a person of faith, believe they should support (or oppose) the bills you care about.

Here are some of the bills the Maine Council of Churches has been following closely that are likely to be voted on in the next few days:

LD 718  We support this bill to close coverage gaps in MaineCare for immigrants who work in Maine’s farms and fisheries, hotels, restaurants, construction sites and elder care.  These neighbors of ours pay an estimated $193 million in state taxes each year (and nearly double that in federal taxes) yet can’t afford a doctor visit.  TODAY! WEDNESDAY, JUNE 9, IN AUGUSTA our partner organization Maine Equal Justice is hosting an advocacy push in advance of the floor vote on this bill.  Attend, or reach out to your legislator via phone or email RIGHT NOW!

As people of faith, we call forthe full civil, political and economic rights of every person regardless of race, creed, [or immigration status].  Hebrew and Christian Scriptures command us to love our neighbors as ourselves, and the Biblical definition of a neighbor is everyone, so we reject any and every form of discrimination and insist that all persons should have equal access to …medical care.  We believe health care is a basic human right.*

LD 489  Known as “The Pine Tree Amendment,” this bill proposes an amendment to Maine’s constitution that would establish a right to a healthy environment.  If you are able to be in Augusta on Monday, June 14 from 9am to 2pm, there will be a rally event to let legislators know of our support.  To sign up, or to find other great resources for doing email, phone or written advocacy on this bill, go to https://www.pinetreeamendment.org/ 

As people of faith, we call for we call for the sustainable use of Maine’s natural resources, while reversing the effects of climate change. Psalm 24 reminds us, “The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it.” Therefore, we believe we have a collective sense of responsibility for the ways in which we use and abuse the natural resources God has entrusted to us.

LD 926  MCC OPPOSES this bill which would permit discrimination against transgender youth who wish to participate in school sports. For more information and sample wording, go to: https://www.equalitymaine.org/LD926 

As people of faith, we call for the full civil, political and economic rights of every person regardless of race, creed, gender expression, or sexual orientation.  We believe all persons are equally valued by God, and we advocate for a society that values the sacred worth of every person – no exceptions.

*Italicized quotations come from the Maine Council of Churches official “Moral Agenda,” adopted in 2018.