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Federal Study Recognizes VIDA for Moving Low-Income Out of Poverty

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One of nine workforce development programs evaluated under the Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE), the Valley Initiative for Development and Advancement (VIDA) was selected as one of the most effective programs as measured by retention, graduation and employment. Findings from the study were revealed at South Texas College's Pecan Campus and celebrated by Senator Juan 'Chuy' Hinojosa and leaders from VIDA and Valley Interfaith. The study was a blind study -- essentially comparing what happened to 500 students who enrolled in VIDA and 500 students who enrolled in other programs.

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DAI, Catholics Pressure Senators Cornyn and Cruz on DACA

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Dallas Area Interfaith has been quietly working with Catholic congregations to build support for DREAMers who are now in danger of losing their temporary legal status as their DACA permits expire and a resolution is not in sight. So far, 20,000 signed letters to Senators Cruz and Cornyn have been collected in Catholic parishes in the Dallas area.

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NCLI Leads Second Local Rejection of Industrial Tax Break

For the first time in the history of Louisiana's Industrial Tax Exemption Program, a school board rejected an application in order to preserve public funding for its schools. Northern & Central Louisiana Interfaith (NCLI) leaders and Caddo Parish teachers spoke passionately at a Caddo Parish School Board meeting, asking board members to "put the students first." As a result, the Board voted to deny exemptions from school board taxes for Inferno Manufacturing, Inc.

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TMO Leaders Secure Primary Candidate Pledges in 4 Assemblies

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TMO leaders stretched beyond Houston, organizing four nonpartisan accountability assemblies and leveraging public commitments in some of the most competitive legislative and congressional districts in the state.

In Congressional District 7, reaching into Katy (West of Houston), TMO leaders from Faith City, Chapelwood United Methodist and Memorial Drive Methodist assembled at Congregation Beth Israel to engage primary candidates around the flooding of a nearby bayou (and need for local Harvey recovery) and comprehensive immigration reform -- securing commitments from both.

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Bastrop Interfaith Secures Candidate Commitments in Fight for Drainage, Immigration and Bridge Repair

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Leaders from Bastrop Interfaith, an initiative of Austin Interfaith, met with candidates for Bastrop County Judge to discuss drainage, immigration, bridge repair, and drug treatment.


NCLI Effort Leads to First Local Rejection of Industrial Tax Break

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Fighting a four-front battle to better invest local public funds, Northern & Central Louisiana Interfaith (NCLI) leaders recently persuaded the Caddo Parish Sheriff Steve Prator to become the first local official in state history to use the newly-granted local authority to reject an industrial tax exemption request.

This month, three more local entities – Caddo Parish, the City of Shreveport, and the Caddo Parish School Board – will vote on multi-million dollar tax exemption requests, one application at a time.

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Valley Interfaith Fights for DACA, Sends 10,000 Cards to Congress

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Wielding 10,000 signed postcards to Congressional Representatives and scriptural passages on the subject, Valley Interfaith leaders and Catholic Bishop Daniel E. Flores forcefully called on Congress to protect DREAMers as they decide the future of DACA.

"The Bible is clear," declared Msgr. Heriberto Diaz of St. Mary's Catholic Church in Brownsville. "We are to welcome the immigrant, as we were once immigrants in a foreign land."

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COPS/Metro, Beacon Hill Leaders Fight for Future of School

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Close to 200 parent, teacher and community leaders packed the Beacon Hill Dual Language Academy cafeteria to challenge their elected officials to work with them to improve the school.

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Valley Interfaith Leverages Candidate Pledges on Indigent Health, Job Training and Colonia Infrastructure

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250 leaders with Valley Interfaith assembled at Holy Family Church in Edinburg to challenge candidates for Hidalgo County Judge to commit to working with them on health, job training and colonia infrastructure. Specifically, leaders challenged candidates to commit to raising the income eligibility to qualify for the County's indigent health care program, to restore funding for long-term job training program VIDA and to install necessary lighting, streets and drainage in surrounding unincorporated neighborhoods.

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DAI Leverages Commitments in Suburban Congressional and State Legislative District Primaries

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DAI leaders from Richardson, Garland and North Dallas engaged Democratic primary challengers in Congressional District 32, and Republican candidates for Senate District 2 and House Districts 114 and 102 . Leaders secured pledges around local control of payday lending ordinances and restoration of state funding to public schools and workforce development.