WHEREAS, Unitarian Universalists have had a longstanding concern over the plight of those who seek refuge from the oppression suffered by them in many countries of the world, as evidenced by resolutions already adopted by the General Assembly; and
WHEREAS, some Unitarian Universalist societies had declared themselves as sanctuaries to house and assist individual refugees and their families, as an active participatory form of protest and witness; and
WHEREAS, a continuing, ever-increasing need exists to assist such victims of oppression seeking to come to the United States and other Unitarian Universalist Societies have expressed interest in the sanctuary movement; and
WHEREAS, the Congressional Refugee Act of 1980 ratified the United Nations Protocol clearly establishing criteria defining refugees;
BE IT RESOLVED: That the 1985 General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association urges:
- The UU WORLD to publish periodically a current list of UU societies which have voted sanctuary for refugees, and wish to be published as having done so, to serve as sources of information regarding sanctuary and regarding strategies for formal presentation of the issue in other interested societies; and
- Districts, clusters and individual societies to give careful and compassionate consideration to the issue of sanctuary, with consideration to focus upon and include information concerning the political situation in Central America, the plight of such refugees in the US and the various means of assisting refugees, including sanctuary.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: That this Assembly urges the Social Responsibility Section of the UUA vigorously:
- To gather and disseminate information about sanctuary, including the tradition and current activities of Unitarian Universalist societies and other denominations;
- To study the initiation and conduct of sanctuary in UU societies and develop relevant materials specifically for the guidance of other UU societies and groups; and
- To foster discussion of sanctuary through meetings, seminars, and workshops.