KFTC Blog

Voting Rights Rally: Ask Senate to Let Us Vote!

Posted by: Joe Gallenstein on February 24, 2015

This Thursday (February 26th) members of Kentuckians For The Commonwealth and allies will be gathering at the Capitol for a focus lobby day and rally in support of voting rights for former felons, and ask the Kentucky General Assembly to Let Us Vote! We hope you will join us in asking legislators to pass House Bill 70, and let the people vote on voting rights for former felons.

As has happened in the past several sessions, the bill to restore voting rights has passed the Kentucky House of Representatives by a large bi-partisan vote. Now it moves to the State Senate, where we are hopeful that the bill will receive the necessary three-fifths majority it needs to allow Kentuckians to vote on the bill next fall.

          If you are planning to lobby with us, you can meet people to prepare in Room 133 of the Capitol Annex between 8:30 AM and 12:30 PM. There we will break into small teams, and you will get a chance to go speak with your legislator on this issue. 

 At 1 PM we will be gathering in the Capitol Rotunda for a rally that will feature former felons, leaders on the front lines for voting rights, clergy, and choirs from across the state to lift up our message: It is time to Let Us Vote! If you cannot join us in person, you can follow along on social media via #LetUsVote, and you can lend your voice by calling 1-800-372-7181 and asking Senator Bowen and all members of Senate Leadership to Let Us Vote by passing House Bill 70 as it is currently written.

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Citizens groups seek to ensure Kentucky officials enforce Clean Water Act (again!)

Posted by: KFTC staff on February 22, 2015

KFTC and several ally groups late Friday filed a motion to intervene in a state enforcement action against Frasure Creek Mining for violating the Clean Water Act at its coal mining operations in e

Want to know what KFTC did in 2014? Read our annual report

Posted by: KFTC Staff on February 18, 2015

KFTC members had a big year in 2014, and you can revisit that work through the 2014 KFTC Annual Report. It's filled with KFTC faces and tells the story of our work last year. Click here to read it online.

Vision Smoketown

Posted by: KFTC staff on February 16, 2015

Vision Smoketown began as a volunteer-based community canvassing project conceived after the Jefferson County KFTC Chapter moved its office to Louisville’s Smoketown neighborhood in July 2013. Members of the chapter’s Economic Justice Team were focusing their attention on local affordable housing issues. After moving to Smoketown, the team wanted to understand the desires and needs of Smoketown residents within the changing dynamics of Louisville.

Our health as Kentuckians is worth protecting!

Posted by: Sean Hardy on February 16, 2015

Sean Hardy is a member of the Jefferson County Chapter of KFTC's Air Quality Team. The following is the speech Sean gave at the 10th Annual I Love Mountains Day rally at the State Capitol in Frankfort. To learn more about the chapter's Air Quality Team click here or contact our Jefferson County chapter organizer Alicia Hurle at alicia@kftc.org or 502-589-3188. 

Hello, my name is Sean Hardy and I have been a proud KFTC member for the last 2 years. I also am a native of West Louisville, Kentucky. The West Louisville neighborhood is one that has provided both economic empowerment and home ownership to many African Americans throughout the years.

It is also home to a conglomeration of chemical plants aptly named “Rubbertown” – referencing its WWII ties as a rubber manufacturing company.

Stand Up Sunday – Stand Up Louisville

Posted by: SCZ, Stand Up Sundays on February 16, 2015

Where are we, Louisville? How is our local narrative fitting into larger regional, statewide and national social conditions?

Louisville, like the rest of the country, has become a place with a more visible and increased militarized police presence. Less than a year ago our local media in conjunction with with many elected officials and police, used an incident with young people downtown to funnel over $200,000 into more surveillance and policing of youth of color particularly along the Waterfront and new areas of “urban” development. Young people were framed as rioting and dangerous. The damaging effects of this increase in the policing of young people can be seen in the case of the Misidentified 4, where young men from our community were brutalized and whose families have been vocal about the need for a civilian review board.

Voting Rights prayer vigils held outside Senate offices

Posted by: Beth Howard on February 16, 2015

People of faith have a long tradition of standing together against injustice. There are many passages throughout spiritual texts calling for people of faith to work for justice and fight against oppression. Also, many social justice advocates have channeled their faith when leading social change movements.

During the 2015 General Assembly, KFTC members and fellow voting rights advocates are joining together in prayer, song and testimony to put pressure on Kentucky’s Senate leadership to pass a proposed constitutional amendment to restore voting rights to nearly a quarter million Kentuckians.

KFTC celebrates 10 years of I Love Mountains Day

Posted by: KFTC Staff on February 13, 2015

“We are here to express our love for Kentucky and our belief in its bright future,” said KFTC Chairperson Dana Beasley Brown as she welcomed the crowd to KFTC’s tenth I Love Mountains Day.

Frigid winds and snow flurries couldn’t compete with New Power as hundreds of people from across Kentucky marched up Capital Avenue and rallied on the capitol steps for a brighter future for Kentucky.

Beasley Brown thanked KFTC members for “your vision, your courage and your persistence” and recognized the many communities across Kentucky who were represented in the crowd.

East Kentuckians send love and good advice to Frankfort for Valentine’s Day

Posted by: Tanya Turner on February 10, 2015

EKY legislative letter writingDuring this short 2015 Legislative Session, it can be difficult for many Kentuckians to make the trip to Frankfort and share their good sense with lawmakers. That’s why members of the Harlan, Letcher and Big Sandy KFTC chapters spent time this February writing to their senators, representatives and key leaders of both chambers. More than 50 cards, letters and postcards are on their way to more than two dozen lawmakers in Frankfort! Some were even hand delivered to House members during the Clean Energy Lobby Day late last week.

President proposes major new investments in Appalachian transition

Posted by: Lisa Abbott on February 2, 2015

The budget proposed by President Obama today calls for significant new investments in economic transition in Central Appalachia. The President's ideas for the region are being called the "Power + Plan." 

Among the highlights of the President's plan are the following:

  • $1 billion over five years to restore lands and waters degraded by decades-old mining and support related sustainable development projects.

  • $56 million to invest in job training for laid-off miners and to support economic development efforts in Central Appalachian mining communities. This figure includes an additional $20 million in job training for miners and power plant workers; an increase of $25 million for the Appalachian Regional Commission's annual budget, to be directed at "communities most impracted by coal economic transition"; $6 million more to the Department of Commerce for "place-based regional innovation efforts," including grants to economically distressed communities; and $5 million more for the EPA's brownfields program to help communities deal with the closure of coal-fired power plants.

  • $3.9 billion over 10 years to shore up health and retirement benefits for many retired miners.

Register to Attend the Second SOAR Initiative Conference

Posted by: Kentuckians For The Commonwealth on February 2, 2015

KFTC members are encouraged to register and attend for the 2015 Strategy Summit of the Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) initiative. The initiative was established by Gov. Steve Beshear and Rep. Hal Rogers in 2013. It’s mission is ”to expand job creation, enhance regional opportunity, innovation, and identity,improve the quality of life, and support all those working to achieve these goals in Appalachian Kentucky.”

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