Breaking the partisan gridlock on climate change is a central
focus of FCNL’s advocacy. Our work has led to the introduction
of a Republican-sponsored resolution committing members
to acknowledge and act to address climate change. FCNL is
working with Rep. Chris Gibson (NY) and other sponsors to build
broad, nonpartisan support. Speaking at the Climate Justice Rally
on the National Mall during the Pope’s visit to Washington, FCNL’s
Jose Aguto called it “a crack in the partisan dam, behind which
lies a great river of climate solutions.” Our lobbying in Washington
is supported and reinforced by the members of FCNL’s
Advocacy Corps, who are organizing in districts across the
country for bipartisan climate action.
While some in Congress are
working to keep Syrian refugees out, FCNL is challenging our
government to do better. Along with MoveOn.org, we co-chair a coalition of more than 100 groups from across the political spectrum to lobby against anti-refugee
legislation. We have also been working to counter anti-Muslim rhetoric through public statements, social media outreach, and op-eds in media outlets such as The Hill, a DC-based newspaper.
FCNL’s powerful combination of media outreach, Hill lobbying, and grassroots advocacy played a key role in shoring up congressional support for U.S. diplomacy with Iran. Congressional Quarterly called FCNL’s Kate Gould “the Quaker lobbyist behind the Iran deal fight.” In January 2016, U.S.-Iran diplomacy resulted in Iran ripping out two-thirds of its uranium centrifuges, pouring cement into its
plutonium reactor, and exporting most of its highly enriched uranium. With the deal secured, we are lobbying to keep Congress from violating the agreement’s terms.
The failure of a decade of war has helped FCNL successfully
advocate for expanding U.S. government capacities to prevent
violence and pursue diplomacy. Yet the U.S. infrastructure to
carry out this peacebuilding work is precarious and underfunded.
U.S. foreign policy needs to pivot to peace. FCNL
has highlighted U.S. support for peacebuilding efforts
in Kenya, Burundi, and the Central African Republic to
demonstrate the power of nonviolent approaches. We are
also leading efforts to secure funding for peacebuilding and,
in November 2015, brought 400 people to Washington to lobby
for a permanent authorization of peacebuilding programs.
People of all ages work for change with FCNL. Through
advocacy events in Washington, DC and programs to sustain and support grassroots organizers in their local communities, we are making change together.
Bipartisan legislation championed by FCNL is headed for the Senate floor in early 2016. The Sentencing Reform and
Corrections Act would reduce mandatory prison sentences and give judges more sentencing discretion. This important step in unlocking justice for prisoners is the focus of FCNL’s Spring Lobby Weekend in March.