WASHINGTON (June 13, 2003)
July Recess a Time to Focus on Media Ownership Rules
With the July return to their home districts, members of Congress will be hearing from local constituents concerned about legislation to re-establish media ownership rules. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Departments of Communications and Department of Government Liaison are urging diocesan communications networks and State Catholic Conferences to work toward reversing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)'s current tendency to eliminate limits on the number of TV stations, radio stations, and newspapers a single company may own. A recent FCC decision now permits a single company to own eight radio stations, two television stations, the cable company and the local newspaper in one city. "Without diversity of ownership, our meaningful alternatives to syndicated shows and infomercials -- alternatives like local news and public affairs programs -- are in jeopardy," says Katherine Grincewich, USCCB Associate General Counsel. "The summer recess offers a valuable opportunity for constituents to speak out to Senators and House members about some dangerous and undemocratic media trends, and to support legislation to address them."
Katherine Grincewich is available at 202/ 541-3300 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
"All Come Bearing Gifts" to July Migration Conference
The United States is more ethnically and culturally diverse than at any time in its history. Thirty million of us are foreign born. In the last decade alone, 13.3 million immigrants began new lives in the United States. Many have fled exploitation, and oppression, while others come fulfilling a dream to work, study or reunite with family and loved ones. Regardless of their reasons "All Come Bearing Gifts," and that is the theme for the National Migration Conference 2003, July 6-10, in Washington. The conference is co-sponsored by the USCCB Migration and Refugees Services, and the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. "The United States must maintain its long-standing and honorable tradition of welcoming refugees and immigrants even as we strengthen national security," said Mark Franken, Executive Director, USCCB Migration and Refugee Services. "This conference will provide critical information about worldwide migration and its domestic implications from experts in the field of human trafficking, U.S.-Mexico border issues, detention policies, and working with the undocumented," Franken said.
In addition to over forty workshops and special events, the convening will include an original theatre production performed by children who endured the harsh consequences of war, violence, and poverty.
Mark Franken is available at 202-541-3065 (email@example.com).
Social Action Summer Institute an Annual Event
While young people across the country are attending summer camps with many themes and focuses, over 150 adult Catholic diocesan social action directors will meet this summer on the campus of St. John's University in New York as part of the annual Social Action Summer Institute. Held from July 20-25 this year, the Institute is co.sponsored by The Roundtable: the National Association of Social Action Directors, the Department of Social Development and World Peace, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, Catholic Relief Services and Catholic Charities USA and is designed to link the rudiments of social action to the roots of the Catholic faith. Veteran diocesan social action directors will hear Margaret O'Brien Steinfels and Peter Steinfels discuss the results of a multi.year study on "Catholics in the Public Square." New diocesan directors will attend a seminar on Catholic social teaching offered by Father Bryan Hehir, President of Catholic Charities USA. "A lot of our time is spent sharpening skills to better share our social teaching and build a Catholic constituency for justice," says Dan Misleh, Director of Diocesan Relations, USCCB Department of Social Development and World Peace. "Call it summer camp for being Catholic and being effective."
Dan Misleh can be reached at 202/541-3195 (firstname.lastname@example.org).