You Helped To Do This (Recap of Amendment 4)

You Helped To Do This (Recap of Amendment 4)

by the Parish Justice Commission

 

Prior to the general election last year, your parish Justice Commission asked you to sign petitions to place an amendment on the ballot that would restore voting rights for felons who had satisfied their debt. More than 600 of you did so.

The amendment had enough signatures and was placed on the ballot and was approved by more than 60% of the voters.

The legislature has implemented the amendment, albeit with unnecessary restrictions, and ex offenders are now registering to vote.

In restoring the right to vote, you have committed an act of mercy, but also dignity and justice, in accord with the teachings of our Church.

According to the United States Bishops Conference: “Crime and corrections are at the intersection of rights and responsibilities. Those who commit crimes violate the rights of others and disregard their responsibilities. But the test for the rest of us is whether we will exercise our responsibility to hold the offender accountable without violating his or her basic rights. Even offenders should be treated with respect for their rights.”

Courageously Living the Gospel…Your Parish Justice Commission

Human Trafficking in My Own Neighborhood?

Human Trafficking in My Own Neighborhood?

by the Parish Justice Commission

Yes, a restaurant within our parish boundaries, only one mile from our church, was raided by federal authorities on suspicion of human trafficking involving 27 victims.

According to Homeland Security, Human Trafficking involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act; in other words human slavery.

St. John Paul II called Human Trafficking, “a shocking offense against human dignity and a grave violation of fundamental human rights.”

Human Trafficking treats the human person as a commodity. It exploits the poor and the structures that cause poverty. And it is an assault on the family, since many victims are children, adolescents and young adults. (Human Life Intentional).

Florida ranks third in the United States for cases reported by states, according to Florida’s Attorney General, it was a tip from someone who noticed suspicious activity at the Largo restaurant that resulted in the raid. If you see something, say something. Report suspected Human Trafficking activity to Federal law enforcement by calling (866) 347-2423. Additional information may be obtained on the Homeland Security website at, www.DHS.gov/What-Human-Trafficking, or by searching the internet for, “Homeland Security Human Trafficking.”

Courageously Living the Gospel…Your Parish Justice Commission