More than 1,000 people gathered at Good Shepherd Baptist for Richmonders Involved to Strengthen our Communities’ (RISC) annual Nehemiah Action. The group focuses on specific community issues and works with the the City government, VCU, and community groups to reach solutions.
The mission of RISC is to bring together diverse congregations in order to powerfully address the root causes of poverty and injustice in the Greater Richmond area. RISC’s member congregations are located throughout the Greater Richmond area and are diverse in their socio-economic, racial, denominational and geographic backgrounds. Congregations in RISC work together to build relationships, listen to common concerns, research community problems, and then to take action to see that systems in the community are held accountable to principles of justice and fairness.
This year the three issues of choice are:
- Implementing “evidence-based” substance abuse programs in the city jail,
- Reducing the use of suspension as a punishment for truancy and
tardiness in Richmond City Public Schools, and
- Improving and simplifying the Virginia Coordinated Care program —
of which VCU is the steward.
Mayor Jones was on hand and stated his commitment to supporting “the consideration of funds in the City’s non-departmental budget for an evidence-based substance-abuse treatment program in the Richmond City Jail. Sheryl Garland, VP of Community Outreach for VCU Health Systems committed to “investigate the reasons why a large percentage of Virginia Coordinated Care patients do not visit their primary care doctors.
Submitted by Ross Catrow of RVA News.