National Secular Movement Update Call
National Secular Movement Update
Newsletter and Call
Call Every Thursday from 12PM - 12:30PM (ET)
Phone Number: 559-726-1300 Code: 199568
President Obama gave his State of the Union Address on Tuesday detailing his second term policy agenda. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) gave the Republican response. But on the Hill sequestration is the big topic.
This week the Secular Coalition met with top executives at the Republican National Committee to discuss what the Party can do to better serve the needs of secular Americans. The meeting was part of the RNC's Growth & Opportunity Project.
The House quietly passed HR 592 on Wednesday, a serious threat to the separation of religion and government. The bill aims to amend the Disaster Relief Act to permanently allow federal grant money to go directly to rebuild churches and other houses of worship after disasters. We will continue to track the bill in the Senate.
The Violence Against Women Act passed yesterday in the Senate and is on its way to the House. The Senate is focused on Sen. Chuck Hagel's nomination for Defense Secretary. Hagel was voted out of the Foreign Affairs Committee on a party-line vote. The Senate could vote on his nomination as Secretary of Defense as early as Friday.
Democrats--led by Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) and Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT)-- are working on their own sequester replacement bill before March 1, that would replace spending cuts with tax increases, including raising taxes on millionaires. The Republican leadership in the House believes the sequester is best, rather than replacing the cuts with tax increases. The GOP plans to allow the sequester to take effect (March 1) and make this case in the continuing resolution, which expires on March 27.
Considering tax reform, the House is holding a hearing and 42 people will testify regarding charitable deductions, including to nonprofits and churches. Finally, the House is considering a pay freeze for federal workers.
We've confirmed another speaker for our Secular Summit: Brad Jacklin of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, who will participate in our Discrimination panel. We also had a productive meeting with the White House Office of Public Engagement who agreed to work with us and secure Administration staff to join all four of our Secular Summit panels. Expect those names to be confirmed over the next couple of weeks. To view other confirmed speakers, view our detailed agenda for the Secular Summit and Lobby Day is now available on our website.
TOMORROW is the last day to get the early bird rate for the Lobby Day and Secular Summit! If you haven't already registered for the Lobby Day and Secular Summit, register now!
Table of Contents:
Please join our movement today! Follow this link to the SCA sign-up page.
II. Secular Events and Calendar
Upcoming Conferences and Events
Other News, Blog Posts, Press Releases
Have something to add to the calendar? Contact [email protected].
VI. SCA State Chapters
VII. Policy and Research Documents
Reminder: The Open Access on-line Research Library at the Institute for the Study of Secularism in Society & Culture, Trinity College, Hartford, CT is available to everyone in the movement. Go to www.secularisminstitute.org. This is the academic website for ISSSC. From there you can access (top right) all the reports and materials on the American Religious Identification Survey series since 1990.
Contact Barry Kosmin ([email protected]) Director of the Institute for the Study of Secularism in Society or Jenny Kalmanson ([email protected]), who sits on the Board of the American Humanist Association, with any additions or suggestions for this list.
Powerpoints, brochures, scorecards, and other resources are now available on the website. These speeches will be free and available to everyone in the movement. The Secular Coalition is looking for helpful research papers, to link to from our website and to determine where additional research needs to be done. If you are aware of any, please send information to [email protected]
VIII. Secular Coalition Expansion
The Clergy Project is proud to announce the addition of the Employment Transitional Assistance Grant, to help formerly-religious clergy find secular employment, thanks to a generous grant from the Stiefel Freethought Foundation.
After originally being denied, the Secular Humanists of the Lowcountry won their battle to run a community booth at the Flowertown Festival in South Carolina. The turnaround came after the national American Humanist Association reminded the YMCA that the refusal violated federal law preventing discrimination based on religious views.
It's coming: The BLACKOUT! On July 27, in Queens, NY, will be the first outdoor Rally/Celebration that will predominantly feature nontheists of color. VIP Seating and vendor opportunities will be available--more details to come soon!
Registration for the Secular Student Alliance conferences in Las Vegas and Columbus opened on Monday this week. Get more information and register here.
Camp Quest 2013 is now open for registration! Registration is now open is open for children aged 8-17. Sign up early for as space is limited, and get a $50 break!
Want to share your organization's efforts with the SCA? Email updates, alerts, announcements or other items you'd like to share with the community to [email protected].
Foundation Beyond Belief is raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society! We are encouraging the secular movement to take part in their Light The Night Walks and help raise money through the Foundation Beyond Belief team. Contact [email protected] for more information.
Foundation Beyond Belief staff will be reaching out to other secular organizations in hopes of incorporating their charity efforts into this report, and to provide a year-end summary of non-theist charity giving. The LLS LTN initiative headed by Todd Stiefel and supported by many national secular organizations has made it extremely likely that non-theists will reach $1 million in organized charitable giving in 2012.
Please contact Dale McGowan at [email protected] if you would like your group's charity effort to be included.
To sign up for newsletters, call announcements, and action alerts, please visit our website. Don't forget to like us on Facebook or Follow us on Twitter.
Contact Executive Director, Edwina Rogers, at [email protected] or by phone at 202-299-1091 ext. 207 or cell: 202-674-7800.
|Secular Coalition for America | http://www.secular.org
1012 14th Street NW, Suite 205, Washington, D.C., 20005-3429
Phone: (202) 299-1091 Fax: (202) 293-0922