Building Relationships • Developing Leaders • Acting for Justice

Victory for Quality Housing

The State of Illinois Passed It's First Capital Budget in TEN YEARS!

United Power for Action and Justice (UPAJ) took the lead joined by Lake County United (LCU), DuPage United (DU) and the Fox River Valley Initiative (FRVI) to fight for inclusion of substantial money for quality housing.

Signs of hope for wrongfully held people with mental illness

As of July 1, our region is within reach of a pragmatic solution to a major social problem -- the overuse of emergency rooms as the default destination of those with mental illness who are apprehended by police but should not be incarcerated.

Written by Yvonne Smith, United Power for Action and Justice,  and Shakeel Syed, Lake County United, guest columnists to the Daily Herald.

A nation of organizers: What David Brooks could learn from Saul Alinsky and John Wesley

Some commentators identify social isolation as the root cause of the current crisis in America. True, but previous generations faced the same problem; and much can be learned from the way Saul Alinksy (1909-1972) and John Wesley (1703-1791) addressed it. This Opinion piece by Luke Bretherton is a rebuttal of an Opinion piece by David Brooks in the New York Times. What is the iron rule?

Making Progress!!

Yesterday a Metro IAF ally, Kane County State's Attorney Joe McMahon and State Rep. Ann Moeller of Elgin helped broker a meeting with Governor Pritzker and IL Metro IAF organizations.

Illinois Metro IAF team members were:

    Rabbi Ari Margolis, Congregation Or Shalom, Lake County United,
    Yvonne Smith, St. Nicholas Catholic Church, Evanston, United Power for Action and Justice,
    Rev. Mike Solberg, Union Church, DuPage United and
    Adrienne McCauley, Lead Organizer, Fox River Valley Initiative

How a new governor, J.B. Pritzker, can go to bat for the mentally ill right away

By: Richard Townsell, Aliya Husain, Kelly Collins and Rabbi Ari Margolis

For lack of better alternatives, write the authors, police often detain and jail people suffering a mental health crisis. As an alternative to beds in jails, as seen in this photograph, Illinois should create crisis stabilization centers, which are like emergency rooms for the mentally ill.

In his first few weeks as governor, J.B. Pritzker will have to take a swing at a lot of tough pitches, but one important issue looks to us like an easy fastball over the middle of the plate.

Action with Illinois Attorney General Candidates

Lake County United, United Power for Action and Justice, DuPage United and Fox River Valley Initiative hosted an action with the 10 candidates in the primary for Illinois State Attorney General on March 12, 2018. This short video (2 minutes, 33 seconds) will give you a sense of our commitment to having a dialogue with elected officials. The link below is to the full length video of that event.