Legislative Advocacy

Support for the positions of public policy and specific items of legislation noted on this page and in Action Alert emails are initiatives of the UU Justice Florida Action Network.

Supporters of UUJFAN urge our elected representatives and appointees in local, state and national offices to support public policy and legislation consistent with values of faith and principle. We insist that the administration of justice and governmental operations be unbiased, transparent, compassionate, accountable, fair and ethical. We urge that long term challenges and opportunities facing our state be addressed with a focus on prevention rather than remediation. Proposed actions to address areas of specific interest and concern are detailed below.

UU Justice Florida Action Network supporters are encouraged to schedule virtual meetings with their legislators before the start of each Legislative session, develop relationships and respond to email Action Alerts from UUJFAN regarding legislation that will come before their representatives in Committee hearings or in subsequent votes on the House or Senate floor.

The biggest obstacles to passage of bills we support is getting Committee Chairs to place bills of interest on their committee agendas for hearings and votes. Use the guidelines in the following section to address and overcome these obstacles.

Resources and Strategy for Meetings with Elected Representatives

  • Join a team and schedule virtual meetings with your legislators before the start of each Legislative session
  • Sign up for ActionAlerts on the Take Action page.
  • Edit the Legislative Agenda to include contact and demographic information about your congregation or partner organization and print copies for your legislators and staff.
  • Refer to the Bills-2021 tab on the Legislative Tracker for links, talking points and additional information on bills of interest.
  • Look up committee assignments for your Senator and Representative. Note whether they chair or sit on committees to which bills of interest have been referred.
  • Urge your legislators to file or support bills consistent with positions expressed in the Legislative Agenda.
  • Urge House and Senate Chamber Leadership and Committee chairs to place to these bills on meeting agendas of committees to which they have been referred for hearings.

Legislative Agenda

Environmental Protections

  • Set goals and timetables for achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions
  • Replace septic tanks with sewers and water treatment systems
  • Ban fracking, matrix acidizing and replace fossil fuels with sources of renewable energy
  • Fund the purchase of Florida Forever lands and enact protections from development
  • Protect springs, aquifers, Everglades and coral reefs from overdevelopment and pollution
  • Reduce the solid waste stream – compost organic waste and expand recycling efforts
  • Regulate land application of biosolids containing nutrients that feed toxic algae in rivers
  • Address sea level rise and salt water intrusion
  • Defund and repeal the M-Cores toll roads to nowhere

Criminal Justice Reform

  • Provide programs to reduce prison populations, recidivism and end mass incarcerationFacilitate re-entry programs with occupational licensing reforms and job training
  • Support civil citations and similar diversion programs
  • Recognize and end racial disparities in the criminal justice system
  • End the money bail system that criminalizes poverty
  • End the war on drugs and reduce or eliminate mandatory minimum sentencing
  • End solitary confinement and protect the dignity and well being of prisoners
  • Train police in de-escalation
  • Hold police accountable for use of excessive force
  • End or limit the qualified immunity doctrine for police officers.
  • End privatization of prisons that incentivizes recidivism
  • Transfer incidents involving substance abuse, domestic violence, mental health and homelessness from law enforcement to agencies with expertise in those fields
  • Implement reforms in H.R.7120 – George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2020
  • Abolish the death penalty

Disaster Resiliency and Recovery

  • Require infrastructure vulnerability assessments and fund flood mitigation projects
  • Require post disaster rebuilding to account for sea level rise estimates
  • Provide affordable housing especially for those displaced by hurricanes and flooding.

Education

  • Fund teacher salaries to further excellence in education
  • Require and fund programs to address bullying, domestic violence and human trafficking
  • Eliminate the school to prison pipeline
  • Provide optional sex education and parenting classes
  • Affirm that religious instruction and practice belong in the home and places of worship and not in public or private schools funded by state or federal government
  • Oppose diversion of general revenue dollars to charter, private and religious schools

Election Reform

  • Establish a non-partisan redistricting commission and allow for public participation
  • Insure election security with paper trails, Risk Limiting Audits and cybersecurity review
  • Pass the National Popular Vote Compact
  • Implement ranked-choice or instant-runoff voting
  • Allow Automatic Voter Registration
  • Repeal SB 7066 pay-to-vote provisions that prevent returning citizens from voting
  • Oppose State preemption of local control

Gun Safety

  • Require universal background checks and waiting periods
  • Ban assault weapons, high capacity magazines and bump stocks
  • Authorize risk protection orders
  • Repeal “Stand Your Ground” to discourage the unlawful and reckless use of firearms

Immigration Reform

  • Appreciate and welcome the diversity, talents and skills of immigrants and their cultures
  • Recognize and develop the potential of immigrants to become contributing and self-supporting participants in Florida’s labor force
  • Protect the rights of families and those seeking asylum while maintaining border security
  • End family separation and inhumane detention of immigrants
  • Allow law-abiding undocumented residents to receive work permits and driver’s licenses so that they may sustain themselves and families with dignity and respect

Human Rights

  • Pass the Competitive Workforce Act
  • Expand hate crimes laws
  • Ban conversion therapy
  • Recognize, acknowledge and end structural racism in health care and criminal justice
  • Affirm the Constitutional right to peacefully assemble and protest

Public Health and Safety

  • Declare that universal and affordable health care is a human right
  • Expand Medicaid to increase coverage and take advantage of Federal funding
  • Treat mental illness, substance abuse and addiction as non criminal public health issues
  • End human trafficking
  • Fund and staff state and local agencies to prevent the spread of pandemic diseases

Women’s Rights

  • Support the Equal Rights Amendment to the US Constitution
  • Support reproductive freedoms, the right to choose and prescription contraceptive coverage
  • End taxpayer funding for bogus anti-abortion clinics
  • Ensure access to family planning clinic entrances

Budget and Tax Reform

  • Implement combined reporting of income for multi state corporations.
  • Require marketplace providers to collect and remit sales taxes on all transactions.

Economy, Infrastructure and Job Creation

  • Fund job creating programs and infrastructure improvements for public schools, broadband accessibility, public transportation, high speed rail, environmental remediation, septic system replacement and conversion to renewable energy