There is much we can do to help one another and our neighbors through the pandemic.

Social Justice

We care for our community:

  • Our Social Justice team has reached out to our community partners, especially groups like TOTAL Ministries and PASOs, to ask what support would be most helpful at this time and going forward. We have also communicated with our City Manager and District Councilwoman to offer our help at any time. There will be many ways that we can help.
  • Please hold in mind and heart those who serve at the forefront of the pandemic–our medical and social workers, our sanitation and food distribution workers, civic leaders, and each person answering the call to serve.
  • Give blood: Usual blood donations have plummeted, and blood is needed for medical care. Special procedures have been put in place by The Blood Connection to ensure physical distancing and to sanitize the donation space after every donor’s visit:
    • When: Tuesday, March 31 and Wednesday, April 1, from 7:00am-10:00am or 2:00pm-7:00pm (please skip lunchtime, when they are especially busy).
    • Where: North Grove Medical Center, 270 North Grove Medical Park Drive, Spartanburg, SC 29303 / (864) 641-6013.
    • Sign up on-line here: https://donate.thebloodconnection.org/donor/schedules/centers
  • Advocacy: Hold our leaders accountable to act in the interest of all of us:
    • Call SC Governor McMaster(803) 734-2100 – and urge him to issue a shelter in place order for SC. There is overwhelming support for this from public health officials as well as economists. If the governor’s office is not inclined to do this statewide, implore McMaster to at least override the “opinion” from our Attorney General Alan Wilson who has declared that local jurisdictions and municipalities don’t have authority to do what is best for their own communities. Half measures don’t work and we must protect the health of our citizens and our health care workers.

Article for background info: https://www.postandcourier.com/health/covid19/some-sc-cities-lift-coronavirus-restrictions-when-faced-with-possible/article_96274a2e-7086-11ea-9974-cbf22b1b3a30.html

    • Call the Whitehouse – (202) 456-1111 (or using the online form linked here if you have difficulty getting through) – to demand the consistent and fair use of the Defense Production Act for the manufacture of needed PPE and medical devices (ventilators and respirators). Currently, the Trump Administration has only called on General Motors to do so (and has publically attacked the female CEO in the process). Federal coordination to manufacture and distribute these items is a must. Privatized solutions for a national emergency are pitting states against each other and Trump is rewarding the states who are the most complimentary of him instead of making distribution equitable.

Article for background info: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/desperate-for-medical-equipment-states-encounter-a-beleaguered-national-stockpile/2020/03/28/1f4f9a0a-6f82-11ea-aa80-c2470c6b2034_story.html

    • Call Nancy Pelosi’s office (202) 225-4965 – to express extreme distrust in the President’s refusal to support the provision in the coronavirus bill that requires an inspector general to oversee and audit the corporate “slush fund” money. Demand transparency in the form of documentation for audits or do not release the funding until that has been secured. We must protect the people – not profits for corporations.

Article for background info: https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2020/3/28/21197995/coronavirus-stimulus-trump-inspector-general-wont-comply

  • Share your actions: Let us know what you are doing to help—making masks, donating supplies, helping neighbors, supporting organizations. We want to create a list of what our congregants are doing to help, as a way to share ideas with one another, to empower each other to act, and to create a narrative of all the ways we are lending a hand individually and as a congregation. Even the smallest acts can have a large impact. Send notes of your actions to Social Justice Chair Alice Sutton at: suttonak52@gmail.com. We will share these on our website to encourage and motivate one another.

Giving

We are entering into a time of financial uncertainty and strain. We share our gifts to benefit one another and our world, not to put any one of us at risk. Please give when and how you can, and never when you should not. All of our gifts–gifts of care, of time, of skill, of resources–have a vital purpose.

  • As many of you have already done this week, if you have a gift you feel would be of benefit that you would like to share–skill with technology, transportation, food, and much more–please reach out to me or any of our church leaders. This has already been very helpful.
  • Many of you have asked how to give financially to the church during this time:
  • Additional Support
    • In NYC: These two organizations are recommended by our congregational contacts in NYC to support work at the epicenter of the pandemic in the US.