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An Interfaith Petition for the Gulf

Please join us in showing our support for the Gulf region in responding to the ongoing BP oil spill disaster by adding your name below and spreading the word to your family, friends, and colleagues.

Dear President Obama,

As people of faith, we write to express our profound concern about the ongoing oil spill disaster in the Gulf. During this time of great challenge, we call on you to work collaboratively with all relevant decision makers to ensure a comprehensive and effective response to this crisis. Though you are doubtless receiving many recommendations, we as people of faith would like to emphasize the following:

• Work with stakeholders: Elected officials must work with the most affected communities in the region to develop a response strategy that meets the needs of the people and the ecosystems suffering as a result of the spill.
• Hold responsible parties accountable: BP and other responsible parties must bear the burden for the economic and environmental repercussions of the disaster and set aside sufficient resources for response and recovery efforts.
• Ensure that help reaches those in need: The government must ensure that resources from responsible parties actually reach the people, communities, and ecosystems that most need.
• Strengthen the social safety net in the region to respond to increased need.
• Commit to a long-term recovery: The government should ensure that response efforts are based on community needs and sound science, that the agencies responsible for recovery efforts are fully funded, and that the affected communities have mechanisms for input into the recovery process.
• Take steps to prevent future disasters: We must ensure that such disasters never happen again through structural and regulatory changes in the oil and gas permitting process, greater transparency and local participation in decision making, and increased oversight.
• Be prepared to respond to yet-unknown needs: Government, responsible parties, and the nation at large must be attentive to such needs and flexible enough to respond as they arise.

The situation that continues to unfold in the Gulf demands a comprehensive and moral response. We have failed to protect not only ourselves but the natural gifts with which we have been blessed. As we continue to shape our response as a nation to this disaster, we urge you to remember God’s commitment to us and to Creation, and to honor God’s vision of health and wholeness for all.
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