SERVING THOSE IN NEED: CHANGES IN 2019
Holy Family’s Education and Advocacy Committee hosted Holy Family Deacon Al Aulner, and Deacon Marty Smith of the St. Vincent de Paul Society in a discussion after the 10:00 a.m. Mass, 11:10 am, on Sunday, January 13th. The discussion was about the changes occurring all around us: new construction at Siena-Francis; the offices of St. Vincent de Paul now housed in Holy Family’s rectory; multiple new housing units west of the church; and east; and an aging, smaller parish membership. We invite others to share their thoughts about what all this might mean and join in our common effort to serve the homeless and needy people who come to our area for help.
Holy Family is a member of Omaha Together One Community (OTOC). OTOC’s annual fundraiser was Saturday, April 13, 2019, at the Kaneko Museum, 11th and Jones St. in Omaha. There was a silent auction, refreshments, a cash bar, and entertainment. A good time was had by all who attended. On Tuesday June 11, Paul Turner will lead a discussion, Insights to Community Organizing, from 6:45 pm to 8 pm at Urban Abbey, 1026 Jackson Street. Come and enjoy!
OTOC has action groups on mental health care, environment and sustainability, medicaid reform and fair tax policy, housing and revitalization, immigration and refugees, and predatory lending.. Visit http://www.otoc.org for more information. Some current issues and actions are below.
- Medicaid Expansion passed on the ballot on Nov. 6, 2018. Over 135,000 signatures were submitted to the Secretary of State’s office in Lincoln, nearly 60% more than the minimum amount of signatures needed to qualify! Nebraska’s HHS plan differs from expectations in that it delays implementation, begins a 2-tier system, must be renewed every 6 months and reduces benefits for all on Medicaid. Contact the governor’s office and your state senator to ask for changes.
- OTOC co-hosted the national Temporary Protective Status (TPS) ‘Journey for Justice Bus Tour’ and continues to advocate for a solution. Representative Don Bacon publicly committed to support permanent status TPS immigrants who have been in this country for many years, and has recently supported HR 6 that helps solve this issue. Some children know no other country. Ask our senators to support this when it comes to the Senate!
- 1st Thursday of every month. the Environment and Sustainability Action Team meets at 7 pm, 1st United Methodist. Present concerns include the need for yard waste to go to compost. The Mayor and the Omaha City Council are now in deliberation about the new trash contract. Ask the Mayor and your Councilperson to support a plan that offers separate yard waste collection to convert it into compost.
- On a national level ask Congressman Don Bacon to support a Carbon Fee and Dividend Act (ask Senators Fischer and Sasse too).
- OTOC won increased city funding for demolition of dangerous buildings from $325,000 in 2015 to $1.1 million in both 2018 and 2019. There was a backlog of over 700 structures. The City of Omaha agreed to hire all 9 housing inspectors in 2018 and 2019 after only 6 of 9 positions had been filled. Now a registration and inspection system of rental housing has been enacted, but needs some improvement. Tell Mayor Stothert and your Councilperson we need regular inspections more than ever, along with a registry.
Additional information about OTOC may be found at their website www.OTOC.org.
Parish meetings are held twice a year at Holy Family, in January and May. The last parish meeting was Sunday, May 26, 2019. Parish meetings are open to the all members of the community. It is the way Holy Family informs all about parish affairs, and the way we make decisions. There is a pot-luck in the Social Hall to celebrate after the meeting. Plan to come, learn, share your ideas, and participate in the decision-making.