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Youth in Crisis

1990 General Resolution

GUIDED by our belief in the inherent worth and dignity of every human being; and

RECOGNIZING our commitment and responsibility to provide youth with basic nurturing, support, encouragement, and protection; and

WHEREAS young people embody humanity's hope for the future; and

WHEREAS a growing number of North American youth, especially but not exclusively in inner cities, suffer from problems including physical, sexual, and emotional violence and abuse, neglect, gangs, substance abuse, unemployment, unwanted pregnancies, lack of adequate housing and education, and a lack of loving familial and other support structures; and

WHEREAS the problems facing youth are symptomatic of the problems of the larger society;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) deplores the debilitating conditions of poverty, discrimination, or racism faced by growing numbers of youth, and affirms the urgent need for enhanced national, state, provincial, and local advocacy and action on behalf of youth;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the UUA calls upon its member congregations and individual Unitarian Universalists to work with youth to promote the establishment of, and to involve themselves in, programs that empower the voices of youth, especially those of the inner city, by:

  1. Fostering school-based clinics and other health care facilities with special concerns for family planning services, effective parenting skills, AIDS, and other health needs pertinent to the young adult population;
  2. Providing affordable daycare;
  3. Supporting excellent education appropriate to the needs, abilities, and aspirations of youth, including alternative schools, high school equivalency programs, preparation for college as well as vocational and literacy training;
  4. Providing adequate, low-cost housing that would permit families and independent youth to live in reasonable safety, comfort, and dignity;
  5. Encouraging governmental and private agencies, unions and companies to investigate models of extensive employment and training options, such as apprenticeship and internship for young people;
  6. Establishing other locally determined services, as necessary;

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the UUA calls upon its members to address the empowerment of youth in resolving these socioeconomic issues.

For more information contact socialjustice@uua.org.