Social justice is the idea of creating a society based on equality for and the unity of all people, a society that values human rights and believes in the dignity of every human being.
UUSD has an active, dedicated, and well-informed Social and Environmental Justice Committee that oversees our advocacy efforts on important social justice issues, such as peace, non-discrimination, economic justice, reproductive rights, immigration, climate change and health care.
The Committee’s purpose is to inform and educate congregation members and the public in areas of social concern; to find ways and means to rectify social injustices; to sponsor and support groups organized to deal with social problems; and to develop informed leaders to foster a just and peaceful world.
We welcome new people with a commitment to social justice to help us make a real difference in the lives of those around us. Take the next step and join the Social & Environmental Justice Committee or volunteer to work on issues of particular interest to you.
If you would like to get involved or want more information on our projects and activities, contact the Social Justice Committee Chair: Don Peterson.
Social Justice Actions
The following are some of the other Social Justice actions and initiatives in which our committee and congregation are involved:
Resolution of Conscience and Statement of Positions: At the April 2015 Board of Trustees meeting, the Board approved for submission to the congregation a resolution prepared by the Social & Environmental Justice Committee (S&EJ). This was the first time UUSD had proposed a resolution that clearly and publicly stated its positions on a variety of social and environmental justice issues and also serves as the action plan for S&EJ activities throughout the next year. The intention was for this to be an annual resolution, revised as the committee's focus changes. In May, documents were sent to the congregation for consideration, including the proposed resolution and a set of Questions and Answers (Q&A) that explained how the committee developed the document and why it's important. On May 31, the S&EJ Committee offered a Q&A session to discuss the documents. At the June 14th Annual Meeting, the congregation overwhelmingly approved the Resolution. At the UUSD Annual Congregational Meeting held on Sunday, June 12, 2016, the resolution was again approved.
Social Justice Film and Discussion Series: The Social Justice Committee sponsors various film and discussion series throughout the year as a way to create awareness within the congregation and local community.
English as a Second Language (ESL) Classes: Classes are held two times a week, on Tuesdays and Thursdays and childcare is available. Sessions are held on a regular basis and are open to anyone who wants to learn English. No classes are held during the summer months.
Food Donations to the Local Food Bank: We collect non-perishable items for the Cape Henlopen Food Basket which distributes food three days per week to hundreds of area residents. During the winter months, we also donate frozen casseroles for use at the Immanuel Homeless Shelter.
Support for Needy Children and Families: We participate in a variety of projects to support needy children and families in Sussex County. These projects include providing holiday gifts for children, mittens and gloves for children during the wintertime and backpacks and school supplies for kids returning to school.
We participate in and support:
- Annual Delaware Pride Festival in support of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered and Questioning (GLBTQ) Community.
- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade and Celebration in Lewes, Delaware.