Volume 15, Number 6 | March 15, 2021 | www.citygatenetwork.org  

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This issue of Street Smart is sponsored by:



Our DC Forum is Starting Today
Monday and Tuesday of this week we will be hosting the Citygate Network annual government relations event—held virtually this year (via the Whova meeting platform) because many of the D.C. offices remain closed due to COVID. As of Friday, we had 180 registrations from 94 member organizations. (Many of our registrants will have three, four, or more people viewing their screens…which is fine.) If you didn’t sign up, registration has closed for this year’s DC Forum; but plan to join us next year in Washington (Lord willing). This year’s guests include Josh Dickson, the newly appointed Deputy Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships; Dr. Deborah Birx, former coordinator of the White House Coronavirus Task Force; John Jenkins, board chair of the National Association of Evangelicals; lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, and about a dozen other VIPs. The next issue of Street Smart will mention highlights from the event.


New Guidelines Released for Vaccinated Populations
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced their new standards for those fully vaccinated against COVID-19. According to their guidelines, those who are two weeks past completed vaccinations can safely visit with other vaccinated people and small groups of unvaccinated people, but should still follow important precautions, including wearing a mask and maintaining proper social distance around those still unvaccinated. Growing evidence indicates that vaccinated people don’t spread COVID-19, but scientists have not yet determined how long the protection lasts. If fully vaccinated people live in a non-health care congregate setting (e.g., a rescue mission), CDC recommendations call for a 14-day quarantine and testing if exposed to COVID (e.g., at a job site, out on the street, etc.). The risk of infection in social settings is lower for the fully vaccinated, but transmission risk is higher and increases when more unvaccinated people are involved. You’ll still want to have “rule-out” accommodations at your facility for un-tested new guests so you don’t contaminate your general population. After your “rule-outs” receive a negative test, they can join the COVID-free population.


Charitable Giving Act Update
The Universal Giving Pandemic Response and Recovery Act (UGPRRA) was introduced in both the House and Senate last week, showcasing strong bipartisan support as well as backing from many faith-based and charitable organizations. Passage of the bill would raise current charitable giving caps from $300 for individuals and $600 for married couples to $4,000 for individuals and $8,000 for married couples. It would also eliminate the current exclusion of gifts to donor advised funds so cash contributions could be deducted, and it would extend charitable deductions through 2022. Solid bipartisan support for the UGPRRA in the evenly divided Senate is particularly noteworthy, as is the addition of Senate Finance Committee member, Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) as an original cosponsor. Two Citygate Network members played a pivotal role in getting Senator Cortez Masto on board. Thank you, Heather Engle of Las Vegas Rescue Mission (Las Vegas, Nevada) and Luis Santoni of Reno-Sparks Gospel Mission (Reno, Nevada).


SUGM Lawsuit Takes a New Turn
Last week, the Washington Supreme Court reversed a ruling by a King County Superior Court Judge, sending the Matt Woods 2017 discrimination lawsuit against Settle’s Union Gospel Mission (SUGM) back to the lower court for trial. Even though he served as a volunteer attorney in the mission’s free legal aid clinic, Woods’ application for full-time employment was rejected by SUGM because his faith commitment did not represent what SUGM requires of full-time staff. The interview also revealed that Woods was in a same-sex relationship, which he claimed was the basis for not getting hired. We’ll keep you posted on this case—one that is being closely watched by religious freedom experts, particularly in light of the Equality Act, currently under debate in Congress.


Association Leadership Meets in San Antonio
This past Monday through Wednesday, the Citygate Network board met in-person in San Antonio. The agenda included numerous reports, as well as recommendations and discussions on future social media strategies, the Equality Act, a subsidiary organization, proposed future bylaw changes, and goals for 2021. The Citygate Network board meets four times a year: twice in person and twice virtually.


Board Training Opportunity
Ripple Effect, Citygate Network’s top-rated program for ministry boards and CEOs, will be offered ONLINE in April. This virtual event includes expert instruction on governance, the board and money, godly decision making, succession planning, and inspiring meetings. Participants receive access to an online repository of governance resources as well as personalized coaching, provided either on-site or virtually. More than 70 member organizations have already taken advantage of Ripple Effect with recent attendees rating the content “Excellent,” fully expecting a positive, permanent impact on their board governance. Click here for more information or to register for the next Ripple Effect training.


Looking Down the Street

  • Citygate Network held a special election for the Deep South District Vice President when Devin Simmons notified us of his March resignation as CEO of Waterfront Rescue Mission (Pensacola, Florida). CEO Stacia Glavas, New Life Mission (Melbourne, Florida) was then elected to fill the Vice President vacancy. She will represent the district, alongside President Buddy Morrow of CITA (Melbourne, Florida), through the rest of the three-year term.
  • Waterfront Rescue Mission (Pensacola, Florida) announced Clay Romano will take over as their new CEO beginning this month. Clay comes over from Baptist Health Care in Pensacola, where his oversight included three hospitals and a variety of medical facilities. He has served on the mission board since 2017.
  • Jena Taylor, CEO at Faith City Mission (Amarillo, Texas) has begun filming a new television show called You Need a Miracle. The locally produced series currently broadcasts on four networks and is available through the global Israel TV Network and on Roku and Amazon Prime. Click here to check out some of the previously aired episodes on YouTube.
  • In a March 4 article about the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine, Huffpost quoted Troy Vaughn, president of the Los Angeles Mission (Los Angeles, California) calling it a “game-changer” for the homeless community

TELL US: Do you have news to share with other network members? Send a blurb to Alice Gifford. Include as many details as possible. We’ll handle the editing.

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Mobile Vaccine Pop-ups
Community Organized Relief Effort (CORE), a nonprofit founded by actor Sean Penn to work in Haiti, has begun collaborating with the Los Angeles mayor’s office and fire department to run COVID-19 testing sites, mobile vaccination units, and a mass-vaccination site at Dodger Stadium. CORE plans to use what they learn in LA and expand to cities like Atlanta and New Orleans. It didn’t take long to realize that mostly white and affluent people showed up at the Dodger Stadium site, even though people of color have been hardest hit by the virus. In response, CORE equipped vans and camper trailers with medical-grade refrigerators and set up clinics on sidewalks and in church parking lots in low-income neighborhoods with predominantly Hispanic and Black residents. They hire people in the neighborhood to get the word out at least two weeks in advance, then use traffic cones to guide people and register them for walk-up vaccine appointments, relying on bilingual staff to assist Spanish speakers. So far, 70 percent of those vaccinated at a CORE mobile vaccination unit have been Black.
Consider: Look at collaboration opportunities in your community to help push vaccinations out to the most vulnerable populations around you.


Catholic Church Expresses Concern About Newest Vaccine
Roman Catholic leaders in St. Louis and New Orleans have notified their followers that the newly approved vaccine from Johnson & Johnson uses a cell line derived from an aborted fetus, advising Catholics to choose either the Moderna or Pfizer options, when available. While not disputing the allegation, Johnson & Johnson issued a statement stressing that there is no fetal tissue in the actual vaccine. They utilize a harmless cold virus, called an adenovirus, just as they did to produce a successful Ebola vaccine. The U.S. bishops’ conference verified that Moderna and Pfizer used “abortion-derived” cell lines to test their vaccines, but not in the development or production.

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Meeting Employee’s Emotional Needs
Less than one third of almost 500 employers, representing 6.4 million workers, believe their wellbeing and caregiving programs have effectively supported employees through the pandemic, according to a recent Willis Towers Watson survey. The two foundational reasons given were that the programs developed did not anticipate a pandemic, and that employee voices did not participate in shaping the programs. The current situation requires holistic programs that support all aspects of the work experience, including the host of challenges and mental anguish brought on by COVID-19. According to the survey, more than half of employers pointed to rising stress and burnout as their number one concern these days, and 62 percent indicated that improving their mental health benefits and stress management programs has become a top priority for the next six months. In addition, 33 percent of employers have prioritized developing a strategy for benefits in a post-COVID-19 world.
Consider: In what ways have you adapted your benefits and programs to meet the new and different needs of your employees and guests experiencing various side effects caused by the pandemic?


Testing and Vaccination Requirements Low for Small Businesses
According to a recent survey conducted by the Census Bureau to measure the effect of the pandemic, a majority of small businesses are not requiring their employees to get tested for the Coronavirus or to get vaccinated against it. Seventy percent of small businesses responded that they do not require employees to test negative before coming to work, and just over 78 percent said they do not require any proof of vaccination from their employees. The health care and hospitality industries show the highest rate of testing and inoculation requirements nationally, with 62 percent of small businesses in the health care field requiring their employees to get the vaccine.

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Help for Businesses Extended
The Canadian federal government announced an extension of multiple critical COVID-19 emergency benefits designed to help businesses through the pandemic. The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy, as well as the Lockdown Support programs, will continue at current levels until June 5, 2021. The maximum wage subsidy rate for employees still on payroll will remain at 75 percent, the rent subsidy rate will remain at 65 percent, and the Lockdown Support program will remain at 15 percent. These extensions will provide “hard-hit businesses with rent support of up to 90 percent,” according to Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland. The extension on the trio of programs seeks to help with an economy which continues to struggle in spite of some encouraging signs of a recovery on the horizon.


City Committed to Affordable Housing
London, Ontario, a Canadian city approaching 500,000 residents, has announced a $40.1 million investment by the government to create more affordable housing. The loan from the federal government will go towards London & Middlesex Community Housing (LMCH) to support the repair and reinvestment of 2,082 housing units, prioritizing London’s most vulnerable, including the homeless, women and children fleeing domestic violence, and people with disabilities. This funding comes from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s National Housing Co-Investment Fund (NHCF), which supports the creation and revitalization of affordable housing. A portion of the loan will be forgivable, contingent upon the units renting for less than 30 percent of the average median household income in the city over a minimum of 20 years, and 20 percent of the units must meet accessibility requirements.

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Cabinet Adds Another Black Member
The Senate voted last Wednesday to confirm Ohio Democratic Rep. Marcia Fudge as the secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) by a vote of 66-34, adding another African American, and another woman to President Joe Biden’s Cabinet. Vice President Kamala Harris administered the oath of office during a virtual ceremony to swear in Fudge, who had served as a representative to the House (D-OH) since 2008. In her acceptance speech, Fudge vowed to deliver on Biden’s promise to build 1.5 million energy-efficient, affordable housing units, to take on the homelessness crisis with “compassion and resolve,” and to end discriminatory practices in the housing market.


Stimulus Package Includes Racial Justice Provisions for Farmers
The $1.9 trillion Coronavirus relief bill, that President Biden signed into law on Friday, includes a controversial provision that commits more than $1 billion toward “socially disadvantaged” farmers and related groups—defined as those who have been discriminated against because of their race or ethnicity. This money would fund an equity commission, agricultural training, and other assistance to advance racial justice in farming. The USDA says it has heard numerous accusations of denying or delaying black farmers the same loans, subsidies, and other payments made to white farmers, contributing to a dramatic decline in the number of black farmers over the years. In 1920, blacks made up almost 17 percent of U.S. farmers, but in 2017, that figure had dropped to less than 2 percent. The development of agricultural legal centers and the distribution of grants and loans to help minority farmers would seek to introduce equity and diversity into the agricultural industry.

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Market Street

Accounting Online Adjunct Faculty, City Vision University, Kansas City, MO

Addiction Counseling Online Adjunct Faculty, Techmission/City Vision University, Kansas City, MO

Bookkeeper, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Bookkeeper, Fairbanks Rescue Mission, Fairbanks, AK

Care Support Specialist, Light of Life Ministries, Inc., Pittsburgh, PA

Case Manager, Water Street Mission, Lancaster, PA

Chaplain/Case Manager, Union Gospel Mission, Dallas, TX

Clinical Director, Denver Rescue Mission, Denver, CO

Coach, City Mission of Schenectady, Schenectady, NY

Controller, Central Union Mission, Washington, DC

Culinary Food Truck and Catering Instructor, Portland Rescue Mission, Portland, OR

Custodian, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Dentist, Water Street Mission, Lancaster, PA

Development/Fundraising Online Adjunct Faculty, City Vision University, Kansas City, MO

Director of Development, Reno-Sparks Gospel Mission, Reno, NV

Director of Family Life Center, City Mission of Schenectady, Schenectady, NY

Director of Human Resources, Winston Salem Rescue Mission, Winston-Salem, NC

Director of Operations, Fairhaven Rescue Mission, Covington, KY

Director of Operations, Rescue Mission Alliance, Oxnard, CA

Director-San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission, Rescue Mission Alliance, Oxnard, CA

Donations Manager, Bread of Life Mission, Holbrook, AZ

Donor Engagement Specialist, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Executive Chef, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Executive Director, Fairhaven Rescue Mission, Covington, KY

Executive Director, Geauga Faith Rescue Mission, Chardon, OH

Executive Director GIFTS Men's Shelter, G.I.F.T.S. Men's Shelter, Janesville, WI

Facilities Manager, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Family Recovery Program Director, St. Matthew's House, Naples, FL

Food Service Manager, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Health and Wellness Nurse, Portland Rescue Mission, Portland, OR

Jr. Staff Accountant, Central Union Mission, Washington, DC

Leadership Giving Officer, Mid-Level Giving, Phoenix Rescue Mission, Phoenix, AZ

Maintenance Manager, Bread of Life Mission, Holbrook, AZ

Maintenance Technician, Central Union Mission, Washington, DC

Manager of Donor Relations, Lexington Rescue Mission, Lexington, KY

Marketing Specialist, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Men's 2nd Shift Supervisor, City Mission of Schenectady, Schenectady, NY

PRN Residential Care Mentor, Shelter KC, Kansas City, MO

Program Administrator (Men's Recovery Program), Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Program Specialist, Phoenix Rescue Mission, Phoenix, AZ

Residential Coordinator_Cornerstone Manor Facility, Buffalo City Mission, Buffalo, NY

Security Team, Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Senior Director of Women and Children's Ministries, Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Sr. Database Manager, Central Union Mission, Washington, DC

Street Outreach Case Manager Assistant, Phoenix Rescue Mission, Phoenix, AZ

Thrift Store Manager, Jubilee Ministries, Inc., Lebanon, PA

Vice President of People Services, Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Vice President of Program Ministries, Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

VP of Men's Services, Atlanta Mission, Atlanta, GA

Women's Recovery Counselor (CADC I), Portland Rescue Mission, Portland, OR

Women's Transition Specialist (Live-In), Portland Rescue Mission, Portland, OR

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Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
Ephesians 4:31-32

Driving home from a long day at work, another driver recklessly cuts in front of you. You honk your horn, shake your fist, and yell a few choice words to make sure everyone knows you’re angry.

Been there, done that. But, as a Christ-follower, do I feel good about losing my temper and behaving in such a negative manner? Even though the other driver was wrong, what did my anger accomplish? Nothing positive for the driver, or for me, and I’m just left fuming and frustrated.

The Bible addresses anger in a number of places, including James 1:19-20: “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.” Obviously, anger, one of Satan’s favorite tools, often leads to sin.

That’s not to say that anger, used properly, can’t also yield positive results. An article by Brittany Rust says, “Not all anger is bad; there is a righteous anger that has a place. Nehemiah experienced it as well as Jesus. There are times when a righteous anger moves us to action in a healthy way. The key to righteous anger is that we not allow it to move us into sin.”

But wrathful words and actions seldom lead to positive outcomes and can cause irreversible damage. We need to regularly pray for God to help us manage our anger in healthy ways, looking to him to subdue an emotion that too often negatively impacts our own lives and the lives of those around us.

Written by Duane Wykoff, Executive Director, Refuge of Hope Ministries

To contribute: If you would like to write a devotional thought for StreetLight, please make it about 200 words, include at least one Bible verse or passage, and submit via email.

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Street Smart is provided to you as a member service of Citygate Network, and is published on the 1st and 15th of each month (unless those dates fall on a weekend or holiday). The content does not necessarily represent the views of or imply endorsement by Citygate Network. To submit items for publication, email editor@citygatenetwork.org.