First Unitarian Church of Richmond, VA
Over sixty Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations have resolutions against the death penalty and/or for a moratorium on the death penalty. Below is the resolution passed by the Richmond, VA, UU congregation.
We, the members of the First Unitarian Church of Richmond, Virginia adhere to the Seven Principles of Unitarian Universalism:
Whereas there is ample evidence that the death penalty is applied in a racist manner: In 1990, the United States General Accounting Office reported “a pattern of evidence indicating racial disparities in charging, sentencing and imposition of the death penalty.” Nationwide, 82% of those put to death had been convicted of murdering a white person even though people of color are the victims in more than half of all homicides, and
Whereas death sentences are generally reserved for the poor: About 90% of those persons facing capital charges cannot afford their own attorney. No state, including Virginia, has met standards developed by the American Bar Association (ABA) for appointment, performance and compensation of counsel for indigent prisoners, and
Whereas prisoner appeals have been severely curtailed, increasing the risk of imprisonment and execution of innocent people: In a series of rulings since 1991, the Supreme Court has drastically restricted the rights of death row prisoners to appeal their convictions and death sentences in federal courts, even in cases where prisoners present compelling evidence of innocence. In 1996, new legislation drastically limited federal court review of death prisoners, and
Whereas the American Bar Association has concluded that administration of the death penalty is “a haphazard maze of unfair practices with no internal consistency” and has called for a moratorium on executions.
Therefore, be it resolved that the First Unitarian Church of Richmond, Virginia calls on the Governor and our representatives to the Virginia General Assembly, the President of the United States and our members in the United States Congress, to adopt executive policies and orders and enact legislation imposing a moratorium on executions at least until policies and procedures are fully implemented which
Be it further resolved that copies of this resolution shall be forwarded to the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, State Senators and Delegates in the Virginia General Assembly representing districts serving our Church members, the President of the United States, the two United States Senators from Virginia, and those Members of the United States House of Representatives representing districts serving our Church members.
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Last updated on Monday, August 29, 2011.
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