Staff Updates

2018 Essay contest winners announced Saige Lind, a high school sophomore who attends Seattle Mennonite Church, has earned the grand prize of $1,000 in the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) U.S. Washington Office annual essay contest for her essay on mass incarceration that highlights the ways that people of color have been targeted by the war…

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Addressing gun violence On February 14, a 19-year-old gunman killed seventeen students at a Florida high school with an AR-15 assault rifle. This tragedy, like many others, has led to renewed discussions about federal gun laws. President Trump and others have suggested arming teachers and school officials with weapons. After receiving a backlash from students at…

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Dreamers, border walls and the budget To keep the government running past Thursday, Congress will need to find agreement on several issues including how to protect nearly 700,000 immigrants known as “Dreamers” from deportation. To end a government shutdown last month, Senate leaders promised to allow a vote on Dreamer legislation by February 8. A White House proposalincludes…

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Prophetic witness: A look back at 2017 and ahead to 2018 The most recent issue of our newsletter reviews our work on a variety of issues of 2017 and looks ahead to what we can expect in 2018. Read the full issue on our blog! Policy updates Federal budget: Just before wrapping up in December, Congress passed a “continuing…

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New legislation addresses detention of Palestinian children Jarrah Masalmeh was 15 years old when he was arrested at 2 am by Israeli soldiers at his home in the West Bank. Charged with throwing stones, he was locked up for nine months. Unfortunately Jarrah’s story is not unusual. Each year Israel detains hundreds of Palestinian youth, many of whom are subject…

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Network forms to increase advocacy efforts The MCC Washington Office recently hosted members of our new network of “volunteer advocacy coordinators” in D.C. for training, networking and advocacy. During their time in D.C., they met with MCC Washington Office staff, discussed policy, and met with their congressional offices. The network is an effort to increase…

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Let justice roll like a river: U.S. criminal justice policy Leading the world in incarceration, the U.S. struggles to find a balance between justice and punishment. Since the 1970s, the primary focus of criminal justice policy has been getting criminals off the streets. This has led to a great increase in the number of prisoners,…

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