Universal Access to Health Care (2008)
We, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent, affirm the Unitarian Universalist principle of the worth and dignity of every individual. We believe that such an affirmation requires us to call for our nation to guarantee everyone a right to high-quality health care, as set forth in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
We believe that the best way to accomplish this is a national, publicly-funded, comprehensive system of universal health care coverage. Until such is passed, we call on the legislature of the state of Ohio to enact legislation that would provide publicly funded health care coverage for all Ohioans.
Universal Access to Health Care Background (PDF)
Stop The Darfur Genocide (2007)
We the members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent demand that the genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan be stopped immediately.
We call on the Security Council of the United Nations, President John Kufuor of Ghana and the current Chairman of the African Union, and President George W. Bush of the USA to use all available peaceful means to end the genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan.
The rest of the world has far too long turned a blind eye to the repeated African genocides. This must stop now and never be repeated.
The current African Union peacekeeping force is grossly inadequate for the serious task at hand.
We demand that the US government and the United Nations immediately supply the African Union Darfur peacekeepers material support so that the refugees can be protected.
We demand that the United Nations Security Council apply enough pressure on the Sudanese government to allow the entry of a United Nations Peacekeeping force and sufficient humanitarian aid to relieve the current suffering.
We demand that the refugees in the Darfur region be provided safe passage to their homelands and be provided aid to restore them to their former quality of life.
Our Unitarian Universalist Principles compel us to take this action.
- We covenant to affirm and promote:
- The inherent worth and dignity of every person
- Justice, equity and compassion in human relations
These first two principles clearly inform us of our obligation to seek justice for the refugees in Darfur.
We, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent, unconditionally oppose the use of torture against any person in any form by any means for any reasons by any entity.
- [We understand torture to be the commonly accepted dictionary definition of the term, which is, according to Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, 10th edition, “anguish of body or mind: agony; something that causes agony or pain.”]
A Moratorium on Executions (2005)
We, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent, Ohio adhere to the Seven Principles of Unitarian Universalism:
- The inherent worth and dignity of every person
- Justice, equity and compassion in human relations
- Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregation
- A free and responsible search for truth and meaning
- The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregation and in society at large
- The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all
- Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part; and
Whereas there is ample evidence that the death penalty is applied in a racist manner:
- In 1990, the United States General Accounting Office reported “a pattern of evidence indicating racial disparities in charging, sentencing and imposition of the death penalty.” Nationwide, 82% of those put to death had been convicted of murdering a white person even though people of color are the victims in more than half of all homicides, and
Whereas death sentences are generally reserved for the poor:
- About 90% of those persons facing capital charges cannot afford their own attorney. No state, including Ohio, has met standards developed by the American Bar Association (ABA) for appointment, performance and compensation of counsel for indigent prisoners, and
Whereas prisoner appeals have been severely curtailed, increasing the risk of imprisonment and execution of innocent people:
- In a series of rulings since 1991, the Supreme Court has drastically restricted the rights of death row prisoners to appeal their convictions and death sentences in federal courts, even in cases where prisoners present compelling evidence of innocence. In 1996, new legislation drastically limited federal court review of death prisoners, and
Whereas the American Bar Association has concluded that administration of the death penalty is “a haphazard maze of unfair practices with no internal consistency” and has called for a moratorium on executions.
- Therefore, be it resolved that the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent, Ohio calls on the Governor and our representatives to the Ohio General Assembly, the President of the United States and our members in the United States Congress, to adopt executive policies and orders and enact legislation imposing a moratorium.
Welcoming Congregation (2003)
A Welcoming Congregation is inclusive and expressive of the concerns of bisexual, gay, lesbian, and/or transgender persons at every level of congregational life – in worship, in program, and in social occasions, welcoming not only their presence but the unique gifts and particularities of their lives as well.
We, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent, having engaged in a process of self-examination and education in accordance with the Welcoming Congregation Guidelines of the Unitarian Universalist Association, do hereby declare ourselves to affirm bisexual, gay, lesbian, and transgender persons, to be responsive to their concerns, and to celebrate and be inclusive of bisexual, gay, lesbian, and transgender persons as members of our church community and our community at large; and we hereby request the Unitarian Universalist Association designate our Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent a Unitarian Universalist Welcoming Congregation.
Resolutions in Response to Kent State Shootings (1970)
We, the Board of Trustees and the members and friends of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent in attendance at the Sunday service, May 10, 1970, urge the immediate, unconditional withdrawal of all American troops from Indochina.
We the members and friends of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent in attendance at the Sunday service, May 10, 1970 censure the President of the United States and members of his administration for their harsh and irresponsible attacks upon dissenters, nonconformists, students, intellectuals, and ministers, which have so recently contributed to the slaying of four Kent State students.
We, the members and friends of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent in attendance at the Sunday service, May 10, 1970, call upon County Prosecutor Ron Kane and Kent Mayor LeRoy Satrom to respect and support civil liberties of all individuals in Portage County–liberties which we believe have been seriously violated in recent days
Support for Kent Community Bill of Rights (October 12, 2014)
WHEREAS, Unitarian Universalist congregations covenant by our Second and Seventh Principles to affirm and promote justice, equity, and compassion in human relations and respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part; and
WHEREAS, the climate crisis threatens Earth systems through warming, destabilization of the atmosphere and climate, sea level rise, and the acidification of the oceans, of which the brunt of the burden has fallen and will fall on the poorest people in the world, who are least responsible for the crisis; and
WHEREAS, the 2006 Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) General Assembly approved a Statement of Conscience on the Threat of Global Warming/Climate Change declaring “that we will not acquiesce to the ongoing degradation and destruction of life that human actions are leaving to our children and grandchildren”; and
WHEREAS, we have a moral responsibility to Earth, to all beings, and to future generations to do everything in our power to bring about a swift transition from fossil fuels to a sustainable energy economy; and
WHEREAS, a significant body of evidence has emerged to demonstrate that hydraulic fracturing and injection wells are inherently dangerous to people and their communities. Risks include adverse impacts on water, air, agriculture, public health and safety, property values, climate stability and economic vitality; and
WHEREAS, the Community Bill of Rights will allow residents to prevent the extraction of hydrocarbons and the drilling of injection wells within Kent and will assert individual rights over those of corporations;
WHEREAS, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent required a super-majority passage of 85% congregational approval in order to speak with one voice in support of this resolution.
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent supports the passage of Issue 21: Kent Charter Amendment (Community Bill of Rights) on November 4th, 2014
Immigrant Justice and to Support Efforts to Provide Sanctuary to Immigrants (October 1, 2017)
Whereas the Unitarian Universalist first principle declares that “we covenant to affirm and promote the inherent worth and dignity of every person”
And whereas religious texts from which we draw inspiration, including the Bible, the Torah, and the Koran among others, call on us to welcome the stranger
And whereas our Unitarian Universalist Standing on the Side of Love campaign is committed to working for immigrant justice
And whereas the Unitarian Universalist Association adopted “Immigration as a Moral Issue” as its 2010-2014 Study-Action Issue
And whereas in 2013, the Unitarian Universalist Association adopted a Statement of Conscience “to affirm that all immigrants, regardless of legal status, should be treated justly and humanely”
And whereas the Unitarian Universalist Association has been on record in support of more just immigration policies since 1963
And whereas the Unitarian Universalist Association has since 1980 supported the sanctuary movement to aid refugees and others seeking sanctuary in the United States
And whereas members and friends of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent were among the founders and leaders of the Kent sanctuary group in the 1980s and afterward that worked to provide sanctuary for refugees from Central America
And whereas the mission statement of Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent commits the church members and friends “to seek justice”
And whereas the voters in Kent will decide in November, 2017 whether to amend the city charter to make Kent a sanctuary city
Therefore, we the members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent hereby resolve to support immigrant justice and comprehensive immigration reform, to welcome immigrants, and to support initiatives to provide sanctuary to immigrants.