By Tyronda James
The United Christian Leadership Ministry convened to bring two things to the hearts and minds of the Rochester community.
President of UCLM, Reverend Lewis Stewart at a recent press conference called for support of Mayor Lovely Ann Warren and for unity among the Monroe County democratic party.
UCLM along with allies, the Take It Down Planning Committee, the Clergy Roundtable and Faith Community Alliance and the Genesee Valley Civil Liberties Union have pledged to support Warren and said they do not call for her resignation.
“We are announcing our prayerful support for our mayor, Lovely Warren and our belief is that she should continue to lead our city for the remainder of her mayoral term,” said Stewart.
“Government leaders should be freely elected by the people who represent the people’s interests. With this equivocal goal and principle in mind, UCLM is asking members of the Rochester community to continue to embrace the long established democratic process of electing our leaders.”
Stewart said the city is in turmoil on many fronts, dealing with the aftermath of Daniel Prude’s homicide, senseless acts of gun violence, poverty, an inadequate public school system and needed police and criminal justice reform.
He said with community members backing and standing supportive behind Warren, she can still be effective and that UCLM and allies “will continue to hold her accountable.”
Stewart said if Warren chooses to run for reelection next year he would gladly support her.
UCLM also called for “reconciliation talks between the two warring factions of the Monroe County democratic party,” said Stewart.
“We need this party to be unified. While you are fighting, the people who are watching and becoming disparaged, the people need you, the democratic party to come together and work together on our behalf.
Stewart said for years the democratic party has been a party of the people, for the people and fighting for the people. Fighting healthcare, advocating for everyday workers, strengthening public education and so much more.
“We all know the glaring problems of systemic racism in all structures and institutions in the city, in the County and even in the state,” said Stewart.
“Today we stand in unity and solidarity. We are striving forward in unison to agree on what are the critical issues and how we can solve them together.”
UCLM is availing itself to assist with the unification of the city’s democratic party.
Stewart said they are always praying for the Rochester community and for better days ahead.
The organization will focus their work on economic justice, removing barriers to quality education, jobs, affordable housing in both the city and county. As well as reforms in justice and law enforcement, criminal justice and the judiciary system.
UCLM said they “will continue to deliver moral and spiritual peace to our city!”