Our UUCT Social Justice Team recognizes that the terms “social action” and “social justice” reflect slightly different concepts. All of the actions of our team are aimed at relieving the suffering of people facing some form of injustice. Some social burden, whether the result of an “ism”, “phobia”, or pollution, is being thrust upon an individual or group of people because of that person’s or group’s economic vulnerability, demographic characteristic, ethnicity, cultural heritage, sexual orientation, or political weakness.
Social actions may or may not have justice ramifications. The charitable activities through which our church members regularly support numerous non-profit organizations provide much needed immediate short-term assistance to vulnerable groups. However, they do not necessarily directly address the underlying injustices which have placed these suffering people in their current plight. These people are still in great need of immediate assistance. Therefore, while our Social Justice Team seeks to shift the paradigm of power causing the oppression of certain people and groups through our social justice work, we believe it is also important to simultaneously use some of our time and resources to apply social actions to address the immediate, emergency needs of suffering people.
Currently, UUCT participates in two social action programs, Meals on Wheels and Split-the-Plate Partners. We also use our fundraising program, Change 4 Change, to acquire the resources to accomplish both our social action and social justice work. Descriptions of our work with these organizations in our area are presented in the links associated with this topic.