On Thursday, the Ohio House of Representatives passed a budget bill that lays out Ohio’s priorities for the next two years. This budget falls short to invest to solve Ohio’s most pressing needs. As people of faith, we want our budget to prioritize the hungry, the sick, and those who are marginalized in society. Through strategic investments, we can build up the Beloved community.
On Tuesday, March 5th, in his State of the State Address, Governor Mike DeWine talked about investing in Ohio’s future. The Governor discussed the importance of maintaining safe roadways and bridges, developing and sustaining a quality education for our children and keeping them safe, helping those struggling to overcome addiction and trauma, and ensuring a healthy environment where we all have access to clean water. A speech is only the first step.
Two traditions are clashing in some Christian Denominations. One is a tradition of Christian treatment of homosexuality as sin, the other is a tradition inclusive of all that in this case includes persons regardless of sexual orientation. The Hunger Network of Ohio affirms the tradition of inclusive love and the extending of grace to all including LGBTQ persons. Inclusion and care for all persons motivates our dedication and work to overcome hunger and poverty. We encourage people to embrace diversity, inclusivity, and care for one another.
As people of faith, we support strong consumer protections for families struggling to get by. Exploitative loans catch people in a debt trap that they struggle to get out of. HNO board member, Rev. Leonard Killings traveled to Chicago to advocate to protect federal rules with a coalition of faith leaders.
Despite the out pouring of charity at this time of year from our congregations, we cannot replace the impact of SNAP on our communities,” Says Nick Bates Director of the Hunger Network. “When we pray, ‘give us this day our daily bread' we take that as a call to action. We can’t do it without SNAP.”
The Hunger Network in Ohio stands in opposition to shortening the timeline of evictions through the inclusion of weekends and holidays in the calculation of days.While we all value an unambiguous process, it does not need to come at the expense of fairness. As outlined in the LSC Analysis of this bill, notice provided on a Thursday should lead to a ling, at earliest Tuesday, but ideally even later than that.
The Hunger Network in Ohio encourages communities of faith to vote YES on Issue 1 this November. As people of faith, we believe that those who are sick should be cared for, not punished. We believe in redemption and restoration of people who are struggling. Re-orienting our drug policies toward treatment over incarceration will make Ohio communities healthy and safe.