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News from the Field

Learn from people on the forefront of justice work. Find out more about global and local injustices, the work being done to combat them, and the restored relationships that result.

Are the Winds Changing on Poverty in the US?

Rarely do we get out of our left/right echo chambers here in the US when talking about these things – so this was a real conversation not just an exercise in embellishing each other’s views.

Mary Jo Leddy: The Call of Refugees

So the neighbourhood became a place of welcome, not an agency but a neighbourhood. We began to paraphrase the African saying, “It takes a neighbourhood to welcome a refugee."

Wolterstorff: The Brave Work of the Association for a More Just Society

This was the fourth time that I have traveled to Honduras to witness the work of AJS-Honduras; each time I have been moved and inspired by the bravery, imagination, dedication, and enthusiasm of the staff.

Does Justice Require Punishment?

Imagine for a moment that someone has caused you harm—stolen from you, vandalized your property, assaulted you, lied to you, killed a loved one. Make a list--what would you need from others so you could process the harm you have experienced?

Now imagine that you have caused someone harm—you’ve lied to them, ignored them, maligned them, stolen, vandalized, assaulted, perhaps even murdered them. List what you would need from others so you could address the harm you had caused.

Look at each list. What do you notice?

Ferguson: A New Low?

Let me begin by stating the obvious, Ferguson is about more than Michael Brown, the unarmed, eighteen year old African American who was slain in the street by Darren Wilson, a white police officer. It is even about more than the disregard shown for his body---which was desecrated and left out in the street for four hours to rot, left on display to serve as a public service announcement to his community. While it is definitely about these things, it is also about much more! At its core, Ferguson is about declaring the inherent worth of black people.

Thanksgiving: A Native American View

What Thanksgiving story do you know? As our American sisters and brothers celebrate Thanksgiving we listen to a sister's retelling of "the first Thanksgiving". 

Taking Root

"It is the people who must save the environment. It is the people who must make their leaders change. So we must stand up for what we believe in.” Wangari Maathai, founder of the Greenbelt Movement, began planting trees as a response to the lack of resources and the degradation of the environment in rural Kenyan villages. She empowered women across the country to join her, despite deep political and gender repression. This is the trailer for the documentary about the life and work of Maathai, the first African woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

Why Navajo Hair Matters

What does hair have to do with anything? For Navajo people, it can mean a lot. “I have often heard that, for Navajo people, hair is our memory.” Many families still have to make the decision to keep their hair, and the memories and identity tied to it, or sacrifice it for more societal mobility.

The Sex-Slave Across the Street

In recent years the global community has become increasingly aware of human trafficking around the world. We talk about the root causes of trafficking like lack of opportunity and extreme poverty, which we see too often see in countries like Thailand and India. However, a less common conversation and less conceivable reality is the trafficking that is happening in our own backyards. This is a story of how a high school girl fell prey to human trafficking in her upper class Michigan town.

The New Prostitution Bill: What You Should Know

I support Bill C-36. It’s a start, a good one, towards protecting those who are vulnerable. But it’s not black and white.

In December 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down certain prostitution-related laws and gave the government a year to either let the laws remain null (essentially decriminalizing prostitution) or respond with legislation. Choosing to respond with legislation, the government unveiled Bill C-36 “Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act” this past June.

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