Congresswoman Barbara Lee Joins the Congressional Black Caucus’s National Day of Prayer to End Poverty and Income Inequality
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) joined members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) and interfaith leaders from around the country on the Capitol Hill East Lawn for the first national CBC Day of Prayer to End Poverty and Income Inequality. East Bay clergy were represented at the event by Rev. Stephen of McHale of Christ Episcopal Church (Alameda, CA) and Rev. Diana H. McDaniel of Unity Church of San Leandro. Local clergy all across the country stood in support of this occasion, and members of East Bay clergy gathered in Oakland at Allen Temple Baptist Church in solidarity.
“As millions families continue to live below the poverty line, and the gap between the wealthiest in our nation and all others continues to grow, it is more important than ever that members of the Congressional Black Caucus and interfaith leaders stand in solidarity to pray for the consciousness of America to be awakened and united against this startling and unconscionable trend,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee.
As the co-chair of the Congressional Black Caucus' Task Force on Poverty and the Economy, Congresswoman Lee is leading the charge in pushing for legislation to eradicate poverty by addressing its fundamental causes. She sponsored H.R. 2182, the Half in Ten Act, which would establish a Federal Interagency Working Group on Reducing Poverty, and develop a National Strategy to cut poverty in half in ten years. More recently, as a member of the Appropriations Committee, she successfully included language in the omnibus spending bill, which supports the principles of the Half in Ten Act by requiring Congress and the Administration to work together to implement policies, inter-agency efforts, and support proven anti-poverty programs that reduce the existence of poverty. This spending bill also states that “Congress should not pass any legislation that authorizes spending cuts that would increase poverty in the United States.” This legislation passed both the Senate and the House, and was signed into law by President Obama last month.
Since 1953, leaders from all religious backgrounds, sectors of society, and communities around the world have gathered in Washington, DC for the National Prayer Breakfast to unite in faith and to build new relationships that will benefit goodwill for all. This year, when faith leaders gather in our nation’s Capital, Members of the Congressional Black Caucus will also host the first National Day of Prayer to End Poverty and Income Inequality in our communities. As millions of American families continue to live below the poverty line, and the gap between the wealthiest in our nation and all others continues to grow, interfaith leaders are invited to attend and stand in solidarity with the CBC as we pray for the consciousness of America to be awakened and united against this startling and harrowing trend.
Congresswoman Lee is a member of the Appropriations and Budget Committees, the Steering and Policy Committee, is a Senior Democratic Whip, former chair of both the Congressional Black Caucus and Progressive Caucus. She serves as chair of the newly formed Whip’s Task Force on Poverty and Opportunity.