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OTOC Leader Speaks Out On Affordable Care Act

January 20th, 2017
Oct 17 press conference

OTOC joined Nebraska Appleseed, Voices for Children, Disability Rights and a mother who has been able to keep her young son alive because of coverage afforded by the ACA

OTOC leader Mary Spurggeon was among five speakers at a press conference in Lincoln on Wednesday, January 18, 2017. The press conference was to encourage members of Congress to have a replacement for the ACA before they repeal it. 

Click Here to see a video of Mary at the press conference. Click Here to read an article from the Omaha World Hearald.

To join OTOC’s effort to assure ongoing access to health care for all, contact one of the Action Team chairs:

Mary Spurgeon at marspur2@yahoo.com

Mary close upMark Hoeger at mhoeger@aol.com

130 concerned citizens attended Who Is Watching Nebraska’s Waters?

January 20th, 2017

It was a packed house at UNO on January 25th when members of OTOC’s Environmental Sustainability Action Team (ESAT), League of Women Voters and others collaborated to ask, “Who is Watching Nebraska’s Waters?”  For clear summary of the risks associated with Costco/Lincoln Premium Poultry project in Fremont and surrounding counties, click on the link below:

John Hopkins – Fremont NE Poultry Processing and Production__ Letter_final

Crowd from left side From front rightThe discussion  focused on how to protect the watersheds around Omaha from the runoff coming from large scale livestock producing and processing operations that are part of this project.  OTOC’s Environmental Sustainability Action Team is hosting this in partnership with the League of Women Voters and Nebraska Communities United in order to assure that the public begins to understand this issue.

The Panel featured panelists, Bill Stowe, CEO & GM, Des Moines Water Works, Dr. Alan Kolok, Director of Nebraska Watershed Network & Director of the Center for Environmental Health and Toxicology at UNMC provided the audience with an abundance of informationDesMoines Waterworks head

The participants learned that over 250,000 chickens will be processed each day in the Fremont plant, and over 17 million birds will be raised in 400 different facilities in the surrounding counties. These birds will produce 900,000,000 lbs of manure each year.

The OTOC ESAT wants there to be an adequate study of the potential water quality problems and careful monitoring of our watersheds if this project is built.

I…change only happens when ordinary people get involved and they get engaged, and they come together to demand it.”

-President Barack Obama

February Issue Cafes focus on Rental Housing, Pay Day Lending, Environment and Immigrants

January 17th, 2017

Leaders of Omaha Together One Community (OTOC) will hold 4 Issue Cafes and their annual night of Mexican Bingo at Urban Abbey during February. The Issue Cafes all begin at 6:45 and Mexican Bingo starts at 6:30 p.m. Click below to download the whole schedule:

Urban Abbey Schedule for February 2017

OPPD Invidual Meetings

OTOC leaders have invited great speakers to inform you about these key issues:

Wed. Feb 2–Leaders of OTOC’s Housing Action team with the head of Building Code Enforcement from Council Bluffs which recently adopted an ordinance requiring registration and periodic inspection of all rental properties.

Tues. Feb 7–Nebraska Appleseed Attorney Ken Smith, Lisa Sock and others who are part of a coalition of groups working to reduce the amount of interest and fees that pay day lenders can charge from over 400% per year tMexican Bingo Nighto only about 35%.

Fri. Feb 11–OTOC’s Fun Committee will once again host this fun family event where we play Mexican Bingo, eat from a great Taco Bar and win cool prizes.

Wed. Feb 15–OTOC’s Immigration and Refugee Action Team will invite local experts to help us understand possible impact of changes in law at federal and state level and how we can get involved.

Wed. Feb 22–OTOC’s Environmental Sustainability Team will invite local experts to explain two important concerns: Carbon Fee and Dividend to properly price the impact of carbon on our environment and assuring that Omaha’s water supply is not threatened by intensive chicken production upstream.

 

350 OTOC leaders met with Candidates for Congress and OPPD Dist 5

October 3rd, 2016

350 OTOC leaders from 30 congregations and community organizations met on Monday, October 17 with Candidates for US Congress, Brad Ashford and Don Bacon, and candidates for OPPD Board Craig Moody and Tom Mulligan.

Click on the following link to see what KETV reported about this meeting which focused on issues, not political parties or personalities: Link to KETV story about OTOC Accountability Session

back-leftClick on this link to see the final-questions-to-candidates-for-congress

Click on this link to see the questions-mi-and-chairsand-background-for-congress

Click on this link to see final-oppd-introductions-and-4-questions

OTOC Accountability Sessionbacon-and-ashford

Monday, October 17 at 7 pm

St. Leo the Great Church Hall (102nd & Blondo)

Candidates for US Congress

  • Brad Ashford and Don Bacon

     

  • Candidates for OPPD Board District 5

    Craig Moody and Tom Mulligan

js-with-bacon

Learn where candidates stand on OTOC’s Action Agenda:

Congressional Candidates

  • Assure Fair Treatment of Immigrants and Refugees
  • Assure Accessible, Affordable Health Insurance for all
  • Improve Behavioral Health Care & don’t criminalize mental illness
  • Support policies to adapt to and mitigate climate change

OPPD Candidates

  • Revise OPPD’s increased fixed service fee
  • Increase Transparency in Board Decision making
  • Increase Commitment to Renewable Energy

220 OTOC delegates and supporters attended OTOC’s Sept 29th Accountability Session with Candidates for the Unicameral

September 2nd, 2016

A full house of OTOC leaders joined candidates John Synowiecki  and Tony Vargas (Dt 7 Southeast),crowd-scene-back-right-with-ps-courts

Sara Howard and Larry Roland (Dt. 9 East Central),

Jill Brown and Justin Wayne ( Dt 13 Northeast) who gave their clear responses to questions posed by OTOC leaders.

Click on the following link to see final-questions-to-unicameral-candidates

Click on this link to see final-fact-sheets-and-questions-to-candidates-for-sept-29

Candidates told the OTOC leaders where they stand on OTOC’s Action Agenda:medicaid-expansion

  • Expand Medicaid to cover all caught in the coverage gap
  • Increase Access to Behavioral Health Care in Prison and Community
  • Create Mental Health, Veterans Courts to avoid incarceration
  • Write Environmental Sustainability into state law and policyclimate-change-speakers
  • Adopt Fair Tax Policy to deal with ongoing structural deficts

OTOC leaders also challenged themselves to work together to spread the word to Retain Repeal of the Death  Penalty

 

tricia-moore-at-podiumcrowd-scene-back-left-taxes

OTOC to host 3 Issues Cafe’s at Urban Abbey in September about the Death Penalty and Asylum seeking Women in Detention

September 1st, 2016
Marilyn Felion close up

Marilyn Felion helped lead an introduction to this issue at Urban Abbey during January, 2016

Leaders of Omaha Together One Community (OTOC) will hold three Issue Cafes at Urban Abbey (10th and Jackson) in September. Please join us at 6:45 p.m. for each of these three engaging discussions:

Wed, Sept. 7th and Mon, Sept. 19th at 6:45 pm  Why Nebraska should Retain Repeal of the Death Penalty. Learn the facts about the death penalty in Nebraska. Be part of inviting conversation and teach your community about this critical issue and why we should vote to RETAIN repeal of the Death Penalty in November.

 

Also attend the League of Women Voters Debate Thurs Sept 8 at 7:00 p.m.

At the Community Engagement Ctr @UNO (6001 W. Dodge) Two  Senators, Two  County Attorneys will  Debate whether Nebraska should Retain the Repeal  Click here for more information:      LWGO-DeathPenalty revsd

Jeanne Schuler

Jeanne Schuler and Sr. Kathleen Erickson helped lead a Sept 1 Press conference in front of Rep Brad Ashford’s office calling for an end to the indefinite detention of women and children seeking asylum

Thursday, Sept.15 at 6:45 pm:

Stop the Detention of Women and Children Seeking  Asylum   Learn how the US is keeping 2000 women and their children who are seeking asylum  in “Family Detention Centers” in Texas and Pennsylvania. Learn about the dangerous trek these families undertake to flee the  gang violence that is currently plaguing El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. Learn what it is like for these women and children to be locked up behind barbed wire. Learn about solutions which OTOC and Omaha faith leaders are promoting.       

 

 To see their moving statements, go to OTOC’s Facebook Page:Click here for OTOC’s Facebook page

85 faith leaders and community rallied on Sept 1 to call for an end to indefinite detention of women and children seeking political asylum

August 18th, 2016

Jeanne Schuler“Crossing the border to ask for asylum is not a crime!”

That was the message that over 80 women religious, priests, pastors and OTOC leaders delivered to Congressman Brad Ashford and other members of Congress. Fifty people agreed to contact the offices of Nebraska Representatives and Senators over the next several months and recruit at least 4 more people to ask Congress to forcefully advocate for the end of protracted detention of  women and children seeking asylum.

Read More . . .

240 diverse leaders come together for powerful Interfaith Solidarity Service

August 1st, 2016

Over 240 packed Augustana Lutheran Church on Thursday August 4th for an Interfaith Solidarity Service. OTOC leaders worked with Institute for Public Leaders, Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and other faith leaders to organize this powerful evening of prayer, song and statements of solidarity that we can overcome violence to have more peace-filled communities.Large crowd from front

The evening featured song, reflection and prayer from Christian, Jewish and Muslim  faith communities in Omaha.

The Interfaith Solidarity Service was led by Rabbi Steven Abraham of Beth El Synagogue, Rev. Jan Peterson of Augustana Lutheran Church, Rev. Tony Sanders of Koinonia House of Worship, Rev. Marshall Johnson of St. Luke United Methodist, Imam Samyr El-Refaie of the Millard Islamic Center.

women prayingRead More . . .

Forty OTOC leaders attend August 8 Training Preparing for a Candidate Accountability Session

August 1st, 2016

Click on the link below for a pdf of the Oct 17 Draft Agenda and questions

draft-agenda-for-candidates

Forty leaders of Omaha Together One Community met on Monday, August 8 at 7:00 p.m. at Augustana Lutheran (3647 Lafayette Ave) to learn how to prepare for a large Candidate Accountability Session. The LeCloser upad organizer from AMOS, our sister organization from Des Moines, lead an information and interactive workshop which taught leaders how to prepare for and hold a non-partisan Candidate Accountability Session with hundreds of people present to seek the firm public commitment of candidates for office around issues of common concern.

OTOC will hold Accountability Sessions this Fall with:

  • Candidates for Unicameral–Thursday, Sept 29 at 7:00 p.m.
  • Candidates for OPPD Dt. 5–October 17 @ 7 pm at St. Leo the Great
  • Candidates for US Congress--October 17 @ 7 pMike M & Sarita question Gwen Aspenm at St. Leo the Great

Liz Hall close upLiz emphasized again the importance of TURNOUT  to make these actions successful. She reminded the OTOC leaders that they want to ask all candidates to say YES to their questions which have come out of months of individual meetings, house meetings, research actions and preparation by OTOC and community leaders.

Nonprofit Advocacy Training

August 1st, 2016

NonProfit Advoacy Training Picture

On Wednesday, July 27th eight OTOC and IPL affiliated leaders attended a training workshop on nonprofit advocacy and lobbying. The full day training workshop was organized by the Nonprofit Association of the Midlands and was hosted on the campus of the University of Nebraska-Omaha. Included in the workshop were three informative and interactive sessions:

Nonprofit Lobbying 101: This session emphasized the importance of lobbying in order to advance missions and achieve policy goals as a nonprofit organization. The session was extremely educational and outlined the parameters in which nonprofits may operate when engaging in non-partisan lobbying.

Nonprofit Lobbying 201: The second session provided insight into how the Unicameral operates, including processes like bill introductions, committee hearings, priority bills, and floor debates. It later described how the state budget operates and impacts our missions and concluded with ideas about how to confront the issues posed by monetary policy.

Nonpartisan Voter Engagement for Nonprofits: The final session highlighted the role nonprofits can play in boosting civic participation and voter turnout among people who care about and are affected by various issues and ideals. Attendees were given information and ideas for how to effectively provide resources to make voting as easy as possible for the greater community.

OTOC and IPL participants found the workshop extremely beneficial and they look forward to sharing what they learned with you!



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