General CBF

CBF Advocacy Update

The following updates come from Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Advocacy

Refugee Advocacy

For more information on immigrant and refugee advocacy click here.

The State Department lifted the restriction on the number of refugees allowed to enter the United States. The North Carolina Field Office of the US Committee For Refugees and Immigrants, shared, “We have noticed an increase in families scheduled to arrive. This is wonderful news as it means an increased opportunity for more families to be reunited, to find a safe haven, to be come into a welcoming and hospitable community here in the Triangle.”

U.S. Quietly Lifts Limit on Number of Refugees Allowed In – The New York Times, GARDINER HARRIS, May 26, 2017

Ways to Advocate:

Church Spotlight – Hope Valley Baptist Church Durham, N.C.

A CBF church has been recognized for their ministry and mission work on behalf of refugees. Working with Kim & Marc Wyatt and with help from a CBF Ministries Council Grant, CBF of North Carolina and other supporting partners, HVBC was able to renovate a house on their property to become a temporary residence for refugees coming to settle in the area. In addition, World Relief has invited Pastor Bill Bigger as a guest at the World Refugee Day advocacy events in Washington, D.C., on June 20. This amazing ministry was also recognized by the United Nations and the UN Refugee Agency has highlighted the work of Hope Valley Baptist Church in this video: https://www.facebook.com/UNHCR/videos/10156256034138438/

Immigration Advocacy

The Davis-Oliver Act and Senate Bill 4:

The Davis-Oliver Act (HR 2431), has been approved by House Judiciary Committee. If passed, this law will requires law enforcement to comply with and serve as agents of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Immigration advocates fear that these bills could be a threat to the immigrant community and damage relations between local law enforcement and immigrants. For a brief summary of this bill please read below:

House Considering Bill Increasing Immigration Enforcement, H.R. 2431 – National Immigration Forum, May 18, 2017

House Judiciary Committee Approves Legislation To Strengthen Immigration Enforcement – Judiciary Committee, Chairman Goodlatte, May 24, 2017

Ways to Advocate: 

  • The Davis-Oliver Act may be heading to the House floor, contact your Representative to share how you feel about this law and how it could impact your community.
  • Support Lucha Ministries, Inc., a ministry of CBF Global Missions that advocates for the rights of immigrants and their families, directed by field personnel, Greg and Sue Smith in Fredericksburg, Va. Check out this video about their work, “We Are Immigrants”.
  • Churches can serve as liaisons to help build trust between community and law enforcement.
  • For more resources and ideas, visit our Comprehensive Resource List

Texas Senate Bill 4 (SB4), was recently passed and similar to the Davis-Oliver Act, this law would require law enforcement, including university campus police to comply with and serve as agents of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  This law could potentially cause fear and distrust of law enforcement within immigrant and minority communities.  In this video, Gus Reyes, Director, Christian Life Commission, expresses concerns over the potential ramifications of SB 4.

Texas S.B. 4 Penalizes Law Enforcement Efforts To Gain Trust Of Immigrants – National Immigration Forum, May 4, 2017

5 Things To Know About Texas’ Sb 4 – National Immigration Forum, May 5, 2017

Texas Leaders, National Experts Discuss Impacts Of Sb 4 Across Texas And BeyondNational Immigration Forum, May 9, 2017

Sanctuary Cases

These two stories demonstrate that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is still following the “sensitive locations” memo that labels churches, schools, and hospitals as locations where agents will not enter to detain undocumented immigrants. The first case also shows that ICE is still awarding prosecutorial discretion, meaning that when pressure is applied, they will give priority to deporting dangerous criminals.

Ways to Advocate: 

  • Churches can serve as liaisons to help build trust between community and law enforcement.
  • Accompany individuals when they need to contact law enforcement.
  • Provide translation services.
  • Support ISAAC, The Immigration Service and Aid Center at Baptist University of the Americas in San Antonio that focuses on equipping churches and other organizations to assist and engage the immigrant community.

More resources from CBF: 

Predatory Lending

For more information on predatory lending advocacy click here.

An early hallmark of CBF’s advocacy efforts has been our national leadership to reform the predatory lending practices of payday and auto title lenders. We embarked on this work for many reasons and have become a leader in the faith community with the help and support of dozens of pastors and local congregations. In addition, many CBF congregations have coupled that advocacy with innovative missions efforts in their local context to directly address the needs of individuals abused by these usurious loan products.

October of 2016 marked an important milestone in these efforts as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau closed the comment period on their proposed rule which seeks to address the abuses of this industry nationwide. CBF Advocacy encouraged church members, pastors, and other leaders to weigh-in and call for the strongest rule possible, one that would insure such loans are not intentional debt traps, but products that benefit both the lender and borrower. The response was overwhelming. CBF supporters were responsible for over 550 individual, unique comments on the rule.

Thank you, but the work is not yet complete. While the CFPB reviews over 1 million comments and works to finalize the rule, the very ability for them to act is under attack. On June 8 the US House passed the CHOICE Act. You can see how your representative voted here. While this nearly 600 page bill does many things in an effort to repeal most elements of the Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Act, it fundamentally guts the CFPB by:

  • Prohibiting the CFPB from enforcing current law or issuing any regulation for payday, car title, or similar small dollar loans
  • Eliminating most CFPB supervisory authority, making it impossible for it to detect abuses
  • Repeal the CFPB’s authority to stop unfair, deceptive, and abusive acts and practices in consumer finance.
  • Prohibiting information in the Bureau’s consumer complaint database from being made public.

The ultimate fate of the bill and the timing of its consideration are uncertain in the Senate. It is our hope that the unique, independent ability of the CFPB to propose and enforce regulations for the entire country will be maintained. Your Senators need to hear from people of faith now who recognize that predatory lending is a moral outrage targeting vulnerable members of our communities and must be addressed. Congress could choose to act directly, independent of the CFPB by passing a nationwide 36% APR interest rate cap as they have for active duty members of our military. Finally, the CFPB still needs encouragement to act boldly and swiftly to finalize the strongest rule possible. You can You can send them an email at CFPB_Community_Affairs@cfpb.gov. Each day that passes another family is trapped in an immoral cycle of debt.

4 thoughts on “CBF Advocacy Update

  1. How about we promote LAWFUL LIVING? How about we don’t promote LAWLESSNESS? How about WE support our legal system instead of assisting people in breaking our laws? Does the CBF assisting thieves, rapists, murderers, and terrorists to evade capture and punishing?

    “We are to see to it that our attitude toward liberty, both religious and civil, both as Christians and as citizens, is an attitude consistent and constructive and worthy. We are to “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.” We are members of the two realms, the civil and the religious, and are faithfully to render unto each all that each should receive at our hands; we are to be alertly watchful day and night, that liberty, both religious and civil, shall be nowhere prostituted and mistreated. Every perversion and misuse of liberty tends by that much to jeopardize both church and state.” – Truett

    “Men are playing with fire if they lightly fashion their country’s laws and then trifle in their obedience to such laws.” – Truett

    • Truett preached about Christian morality and the importance of influencing the government to serve moral ends consistent with Christian principle. He didn’t misuse the principle of church-state separation to encourage his fellow Christians to disengage from the political sphere and not work to shape laws and influence political systems.

      Depicting immigrants as lawless evildoers is dishonest and unChristian.

      • So you disagree with Truett except when Truett disagrees with you – and YOU know what was in his mind? I was simply quoting him. Breaking the LAW is LAWLESSNESS is it not? Gotta love it when you find someone you don’t agree with so you call them “dishonest & un-Christian” in your attempt to minimize people with differing opinions. And you don’t even use your full name.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s