Governor Scott Walker proclaims January 21-27 as School Choice Week in Wisconsin
Wisconsin will celebrate National School Choice Week 2018 (January 21-27, 2018) with 563 events, meetings, and activities across the Badger State.
Joining dozens of other governors and hundreds of city and county leaders nationwide, Gov. Scott Walker has officially proclaimed Jan. 21-27 School Choice Week in Wisconsin.
Wisconsonians have planned 563 events and activities for the week to celebrate educational opportunity and spark conversations about the options parents have, or want to have, for their children.
This year, more than 32,000 independently planned school choice events and activities will take place nationwide across all 50 states. Events include rallies, roundtable discussions, coffeehouse meet-ups, festivals, school fairs, and more.
Though cosponsored by nearly a third of the Wisconsin Legislature, the Heal Without Harm Initiative – a set of bills that would ensure fetal tissue research in Wisconsin continues without controversy – lingers in committee without action. The Fetal Remains Respect Act (SB 423/AB 549) and the Unborn Child Disposition and Anatomical Gift Act (SB 424/AB 550), authored by Sen. Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls) and Rep. Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc), would ban the sale and use of body parts from aborted babies and inform parents about the ability to donate their miscarried or stillborn child’s tissue.
Initial introduction of the Senate bills was delayed by legislative leaders for months. Even though the bills received a hearing before the Senate Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety in early November, Committee Chair Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) has yet to hold a vote on the bills. Senator Wanggaard’s office has indicated that the Chair will not schedule a committee vote until a majority of Senators consent to vote for the bill on the Senate floor. (more…)
Sen. Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) and Sen. Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) need to hear from you immediately!
The Heal Without Harm (HWH) Legislative Initiative – SB 423/AB 549 and SB 424/AB 550 (Sen. Terry Moulton, R-Chippewa Falls, and Rep. Joel Kleefisch, R-Oconomowoc) – would ban the sale and use of the body parts of aborted babies and instead encourage the donation of tissue for research from children who are stillborn or miscarried.
Currently, SB 423 and SB 424 have received public hearings, but Senate Judiciary and Public Safety committee Chair Senator Van Wanggaard has indicated he will not advance the bills out of committee unless Senators make their support for these bills known. However, Chair Wanggaard has advanced numerous bills through his committee with fewer Senate co-sponsors and with far less Senator support at the public hearing.
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgeraldsupports this highly unusual delay in getting these bills out of committee. However, there are no Senate rules requiring bills to have sufficient floor votes in order to be voted out of committee; and many bills advance out of committee without prior knowledge of who will vote in favor of or against them on the floor.
The public has a right to know what committee members think about the Heal Without Harm Initiative.
Call Senator Fitzgerald at 608-266-5660 and urge that a committee vote on SB 423 and SB 424 be held ASAP.
Call Senator Wanggaard at 608-266-1832 and urge him to hold a committee vote on SB 423 and SB 424 ASAP.
The Senate will convene on January 23 for one of the last times this session. Tell Senators Fitzgerald and Wanggaard to support the democratic process and hold an executive session on these bills now! Committee action now means the Senate could vote on these bills on January 23!
Questions? Take some time to visit the HWH Q&A to learn more about this critical issue. Thank you for standing with us for life!
The Senate Education Committee recently held a public hearing on two bills regarding federal- and state-mandated standardized tests in public, charter, opportunity and choice schools. Senate Bill 222 requires school districts to consolidate and publicize information about each test, including grades administered in, reason for the test, and what the district will do with the results. Senate Bill 234 makes it clear that no matter the grade-level where a state or federal standardized test is given, parents can opt their children out of these tests.
Senator Duey Stroebel (R-Saukville) and Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac) are the lead authors on the bills. They believe parents are responsible for the education of their children and that schools should take reasonable actions to help them in making wise educational decisions. Both of these common-sense, parent-focused bills have already passed in the state assembly; they just need a senate vote.
Call your state senator today and ask them to support Senate Bills 222 and 234. Find your legislator HERE. (Simply enter your address into the search box in the upper right-hand corner.)
A parent with a child in the West Bend School District contacted police today after a survey was given to 8th graders questioning their sexuality.
“If I walked up to a 13 year old on the street and started asking these questions I’d be put in the back of a squad,” said the parent, who prefers to remain anonymous to protect his child.
The parent noted he called police because “that teacher and that school subjected all these kids to child abuse today. I was told this was a segue into a new lesson plan about civil rights. The part that concerns me is a whole lot of questions have nothing to do with education whatsoever, especially the ones about parent finances.”
Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling states, “Parents have every right to be concerned about this survey. The idea of these “white privilege” surveys is basically to indoctrinate, not really educate, students regarding so-called civil rights issues. This is a reminder that parents need to make sure they have open communication with their kids and that they are doing all they can to be aware of what’s going on in classrooms.”
At its core, the Johnson Amendment should deeply offend religious leaders.
The Johnson Amendment, passed in 1954, is a speech restriction in the tax code that prohibits all nonprofits—including churches—from “participating” or “intervening” in elections (though no one, including tax experts, really knows what that means). President Donald Trump has repeatedly pledged to repeal the Johnson Amendment. And now, the House of Representatives has included an amendment to the law in its tax bill that would fix the Johnson Amendment’s unconstitutional speech restrictions.
The bottom line is that the Johnson Amendment infringes on the First Amendment rights of churches and pastors because it allows federal bureaucrats to determine what pastors can and can’t say. Alliance Defending Freedom has long advocated for a fix to the Johnson Amendment because of this.
Last week, Wisconsin Family Action joined over 40 other state and national leaders in sending a letter to the House of Representatives leadership urging them to be sure the tax reform bill repeals the Johnson Amendment especially since the senate version leaves the Johnson amendment intact. Now we wait to see if our collective efforts paid off on this important free speech matter.
The New York Times reported that nationally, pro-life pregnancy centers outnumber abortion facilities. At the time, there were reportedly 2,500 pro-life centers compared to around 1,800 abortion centers. Read more HERE.
WFA president Julaine Appling shares, “How exciting is this?! Wisconsin is tracking the same type of numbers. According to Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, they have 21 sites, while we have at least 80 life-saving, woman-helping Pregnancy Resource Centers statewide. These centers are why we love the Choose Life Wisconsin license plate that helps fund their awesome work!”
Since 1991, The U.S. Centers for Disease Control has surveyed teens every two years in order to identify trends in risky adolescent behaviors.
Recently, in West Bend, a concerned resident and grandmother who is also a registered nurse, raised some very valid concerns before her local school board about the survey. She stated, “How would you feel if you were asked [these questions]?” She added, “What does this have to do with educating our children?” She went on to suggest a more positive approach such as asking, “Are you aware that you are more likely to live in poverty as a single parent?” and “Are you aware of the negative physical and emotional aspects of having sex before marriage?”
Watch the short video of this testimony on this issue from the West Bend School Board meeting HERE.
“The Youth Risk Behavior Survey has been around quite a while,” says WFA president Julaine Appling, “I dare say most school districts in our state give the survey. There is no question that the questions are leading and the subject matter invasive. It’s important for parents to know they can opt their child out of taking the survey. Make sure you know if and when your child will be asked to take this survey.”
MADISON—Each year for the past 22 years, Wisconsin Family Council (WFC), the educational arm of Wisconsin Family Action (WFA), has displayed a Merry Christmas sign in the State Capitol Rotunda. The sign not only wishes everyone a Merry Christmas, but reminds viewers of the real reason for the season—Jesus Christ, mankind’s Savior.
Today Wisconsin Family Council once again put up the sign in the capitol while Wisconsin Family Action placed an accompanying nativity display.
“Celebrating Christ’s birth is a Christian celebration, an American holiday and a Wisconsin tradition,” said Julaine Appling, president of WFA and WFC. “The Germans who played such an important role in settling our state brought this great tradition with them.”
The First Amendment to the US Constitution prohibits government from interfering with religion and guarantees citizens the right to exercise their religion, including celebrating Christmas, both in the privacy of their homes and in the public square.
Appling continued, “Thousands of visitors come to our beautiful state capitol during the holiday season to enjoy the gorgeous state Christmas tree with all the handmade ornaments. We are honored to be able to exercise our religious freedom and have our display in the rotunda as a silent but powerful witness to the truth of Christmas and to offer hope to all those who see it.”
The sign and the nativity will be on display on the First Floor Rotunda from today through December 31, 2017.
Merry Christmas to all!
Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide, not-for-profit organization actively strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious liberty in Wisconsin.
As we spent time in celebration this past Thanksgiving 2017, we thought it appropriate to give special thanks to God for you ~ our volunteers, supporters and friends. Your prayers, messages and financial partnership have allowed us to continue to make a difference in your community, in the culture and in our great state.
We give thanks, as well, for generous friends of Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Family Council who have given us a $30,000 matching grant, something that blesses and empowers not only WFA and WFC but doubles the amount of your giving instantly today – Giving Tuesday– a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. Giving Tuesday is celebrated annually on the first Tuesday following Thanksgiving in the U.S. right on the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. CLICK HERE to double your donation instantly, right now!
If you’re looking for an easy way to make a real and significant impact in The Badger State, today – Giving Tuesday – is the day to take action and double your giving at the same time! CLICK HERE to double your gift today – up to $30,000!
Your contribution on Giving Tuesday tells us that you stand with us, allowing us to be your voice, as we work each to day strengthen, preserve and promote marriage, family, life and religious freedom.
Partnering with us on Giving Tuesdaywill make every $10 you give into a $20 gift, every $50 into $100, and every $500 into $1,000 up to $30,000. Your alliance with Wisconsin Family Action & Wisconsin Family Council is essential in order to achieve victories such as:
—Our new “Choose Life” Wisconsin license plates. After 10 years of pursuing a pro-life license plate for The Badger State, this dream has become a reality! The purchase of these plates gives financial assistance to our woman-helping, life-saving Pregnancy Resource Centers. It doesn’t get better than that! CLICK HERE to double your giving – up to $30,000 – and join us as we stand for LIFE in Wisconsin. CLICK HERE to learn more about how to obtain your Choose Life license plate.
—The very positive outcome for religious freedom resulting from a referral we made to our legal ally Alliance Defending Freedom,. When Madison photographer Amy Lawson (photo, left) of AmyLynn Photography Studio contacted us about a city ordinance and state law that prevented her from speaking and creating in accordance with her beliefs and would have forced her to photograph same-sex “weddings,” we were able to put her in contact with some of the best lawyers in the country. This past August a Dane County judge heard Amy’s case and decided in her favor, essentially allowing creative professionals in Wisconsin who don’t have storefronts the freedom to determine what ideas they will promote using their artistic talents. CLICK HERE to partner with us today – Giving Tuesday – to double your donation up to $30,000!
— And in the state budget, our work resulted in eliminating two domestic partnership registries that undermine marriage and in giving Bible/church camps the same amount of tax-exempt property as all other camps in the state.
You made these victories possible! And there’s so much more that has been done and is needing to be done. In partnership with you, Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Family Council are uniquely positioned to keep getting the job done. We are your voice in The Badger State to strengthen, preserve and promote marriage, family, life and religious liberty. Won’t you CLICK HERE on this Giving Tuesday to join us as we work hard in partnership with you and on your behalf to uphold your core values and principles? When you do, your giving will double – up to $30,000 – and your partnership will grow the presence of Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Family Council and–God wiling–will result in more victories such as those mentioned above.
We give thanks, today and every day, for you and for your continued encouragement and financial support. We ask you to prayerfully and sincerely consider making every opportunity of this generous $30,000 matching grant today – Giving Tuesday.
One radio station and 5 churches, represented by legal counsel, sent a letter to all 8 De Pere Common Council members and the mayor letting them know that the so-called anti-discrimination ordinance they passed on a 5-4 vote last Tuesday is unconstitutional and put the City on notice regarding legal action. The ordinance gives special rights to certain classes of citizens, including sexual orientation and gender identity and gender expression in housing, employment and public accommodation. The public accommodation portion has no religious or conscience exemption.
“This ordinance puts every business owner and every church and religious organization in De Pere in real jeopardy,” said Julaine Appling, WFA president, “not to mention threatens the well-being of citizens. I applaud the radio station and the churches that are willing to stand up to this unconstitutional ordinance that trounces on their constitutionally protected religious beliefs.”
This week we were fortunate enough to be at our state capitol at the very same time of the annual Christmas tree arrival. Below are some photos we captured for those who have never witnessed this event.
The tree will be placed in the rotunda in 1-2 weeks and decorated with ornaments made by schoolchildren that celebrate the Capitol’s centennial.
The Capitol Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony will be on Friday, December 1 from noon-1 PM in the Capitol Rotunda.
Choose Life Wisconsin/Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling received her brand new Choose Life license plates in the mail yesterday. In the video below, she demonstrates how to assemble the plate and shows how the plate looks once it is ready for attaching to your vehicle.
To learn more about how to obtain your Choose Life Wisconsin license plate, click HERE.
Did you already receive your plate? Send us your photo(s) of you with your Choose Life plate at [email protected]
Where: Wisconsin State Capitol, Room 417 North (GAR Hall)
When: 10 AM, Nov. 14th, 2017
Why: Your voice is needed at the State Capitol! Please come to register in support and even testify in favor of AB 550, one of the bills that makes up the Heal Without Harm Legislative Initiative.
AB 550, Unborn Child Disposition and Anatomical Gift Act, will make certain that families who have suffered the loss of a child due to miscarriage or stillbirth are given information about their options for the final disposition of their child, and the opportunity to donate their child’s remains. In addition, the bill requires the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) to study the feasibility of developing ethical fetal tissue and umbilical cord blood banks in Wisconsin for use in research.
If you plan on attending the hearing in the Assembly Committee on Health, email the coalition at [email protected] so we can connect with you and get you more resources!
Can’t make it to the hearing? Consider submitting written testimony! Email the coalition at [email protected] for more information.
Contact your legislators and ask them:
To co-sponsor the Heal Without Harm Legislative Initiative if they haven’t already
Ensure a public hearing is held in the Assembly for AB 549, AB 550’s companion bill, ASAP
Ensure both bills are passed in both houses ASAP
Don’t know who your legislators are? Go to legis.wisconsin.gov and type in your home address under “Who Are My Legislators” or call the Legislative Hotline: 1-800-362-9472.
Questions? Take some time to visit our Q&A to learn more about this critical issue.
Wisconsin FamilIf this bill were to become law, Wisconsin would be the first state to lower the legal drinking age. Drinking alcohol in Wisconsin is endemic. A 2015 report showed Wisconsin to be the heaviest drinking state in the country and in 2016 a report showed 12 of the top 20 drunkest American cities are in Wisconsin. I can’t imagine this bill makes things better in any way.
I was born in L.A. in 1984. The year marked the beginning of the crack cocaine epidemic that would sweep the nation, springing from South Central L.A. The Black community was hit hardest. The “Crack Epidemic” was a major factor in fetal deaths increasing by 25%, low birth weights increasing by 10%, and the number of Black children being placed into foster care more than doubling.
This was the world my identical twin sister and I were born into. Our birth mother conceived twins at age 40, was rumored to be living in a garage in South Central, and was almost certainly addicted to crack. This would be her 9th pregnancy and final delivery–identical twin girls. (more…)
For over two decades, National Adoption Month has been promoted and celebrated every November in communities across the country. Many national, State, and local agencies as well as foster, kinship care, and adoptive family groups will help spread the word through programs, events, and activities that help raise awareness for thousands of children and youth in foster care who are waiting for permanent, loving families. Currently, Wisconsin has over 1,300 children in foster care awaiting adoption.
“Adoption is close to our hearts at Wisconsin Family Council, partly because I am adopted,” shares WFA president Julaine Appling, “But also because we know adoption is often a very good option for a woman who is considering an abortion. So this month we will be doing a special emphasis on adoption through our Wisconsin Family Minute because we believe giving children a forever earthly family is life-changing!”
Click HERE to learn more from Evangelical Child and Family Agency (ECFA) about adoption, pregnancy counseling, post-legal adoption services as well as how you can help those considering adoption.
Earlier this week the State Assembly Family Law Committee held a hearing on a bill that would completely remove Wisconsin’s decades-old waiting period after a divorce before a remarriage. Currently the waiting period is 6 months from the time a divorce is finalized before remarriage can happen. The bill is authored by Republican Representative Cindi Duchow (R-Delafield) and supported by six other Republicans and four Democrats, including just one Senator, Democrat Janis Ringhand (Evansville) who is the senate author. Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action, testified in opposition to the proposal.
“Statistics show remarriages are more vulnerable to divorce than first marriages,” says Julaine, “Removing this reasonable waiting period sets remarriages up for problems that could very easily result in yet another divorce. When children are involved, it’s especially important to have this waiting period. It’s time to consider children, not just adult desires.”
An ordinance that has been deemed “anti-discriminatory” has been proposed and is awaiting a vote by the De Pere Common Council on November 7 at 7:30 p.m.. Click HERE to read the earliest public reference to the ordinance.
Essentially the proposal adds gender identity and gender expression to the list of protected classes in the city’s anti-discrimination laws related to housing, employment and public accommodations. There are some exceptions in the housing policy—for instance it doesn’t apply to religious organizations that own homes used for their members or rented to their members; and it doesn’t apply to a home owner who owns no more than 3 single-family dwellings that he may rent or live in. It also doesn’t apply to a situation where an owner of a duplex, triplex or quadplex lives in one of the units and rents out the others. The main group the housing ordinance appears to be going after is owners of condominium developments, apartments, townhouses, etc…or we suppose a builder who develops a subdivision and is looking to sell the homes built in that development. (more…)
WHAT: De Pere Common Council Meeting WHEN: Tuesday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. WHERE: City Hall, Council Chambers, 335 S. Broadway, De Pere, WI
HERE’S THE “WHY”: Your De Pere Common Council will be voting on Tuesday, November 7, on an ordinance they declare is “anti-discriminatory” in nature. The ordinance prohibits discrimination in housing, employment and places of public accommodation against some 20-odd groups of protected classes of citizens. Included among those classes is “gender identity/gender expression.” Do you think private businesses in De Pere should be forced to allow men in the women’s restrooms or changing rooms? Should churches or religious organizations that encourage the public to attend their services be forced to allow men in the women’s restrooms or changing rooms or vice versa?
The City of De Pere proposed ordinance was recently introduced by Alderperson Casey Nelson, who just this past April was elected to the Common Council. The earliest reference we can find to this policy is in the minutes from the September 12, 2017 Finance/Personnel Committee meeting.
The Board of Health passed the proposed ordinance on Monday, October 23. Alderman Nelson and Alderman Ryan Jennings are on the Board of Health. Now the full Common Council will consider the ordinance for a vote on Tuesday, November 7. The public will be given an opportunity to express their opinion on this proposed policy/ordinance.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
1)Call your common council member, the mayor and all of the members of the council expressing your concern and opinion. Click HEREto access contact information for the De Pere mayor and Common Council members. 2) Share this information with other residents of De Pere. Encourage them to contact their council member and also attend the meeting on Tuesday, November 7. 3) Make sure your pastor and ministry leaders know about the meeting on Tuesday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. at City Hall in the Council Chambers, 335 S. Broadway, De Pere. 4) Pray! Pray that God will change hearts and minds of the decision makers the good people of De Pere have elected to the Common Council.
For more information on how this ordinance could impact local businesses, religious ministries, etc., clickHERE.
Your help is needed NOW! Efforts are underway to end the trafficking and use of aborted unborn children in Wisconsin. The Heal Without Harm (HWH) Legislative Initiative – Senate Bill 423 and Senate Bill 424, both authored by Sen. Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls), would ban the trade and use of aborted fetal body parts and instead encourage the ethical donation of tissue from children who are stillborn or miscarried.
Neither bill has received a public hearing, and time is running short. If the bills do not receive a public hearing and pass out of the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee before November 3rd,they will not become law this session.(more…)
Seven months after two bills were given to State Senate President Republican Roger Roth, they are now finally formally introduced. Senate rules stipulate that the Senate President is to “promptly” introduce bills given to him from senate authors. Introduction includes getting a bill number and a committee assignment, the first major steps in the legislative process. (more…)
Attorney General Jeff Sessions is instructing all federal agencies to ensure to the “greatest extent practicable and permitted by law” that the religious beliefs of people, businesses, churches and other organizations are accommodated and not burdened by the federal government.
In response to President Donald Trump’s executive order in May, which called on the Department of Justice to issue guidance interpreting religious liberty protections in federal law and guide all agencies in compliance, the Justice Department issued a sweeping guidance on religious freedom that was released [last] Friday.
“It’s been a long time since we’ve seen this type of constitutional analysis of religious freedom,” says WFA president Julaine Appling, “It’s refreshing and encouraging. Hopefully it will stop some of the blatant assaults against our First Amendment rights. What we can’t afford is to assume because we have these directives now, that we will have them in the future. The price of freedom really is ongoing vigilance.”
On Thursday, October 19, Wisconsin Christian News will host an event at its new Ministry Center in downtown Marshfield. Wisconsin Family Council (WFC) president Julaine Appling will be the guest speaker that evening and will present “Punching Holes in the Darkness: Equipping Christians to Bring Light to the Critical Issues of Today” from 6 to 8 p.m. Topics for the evening will include family breakdown, sexual anarchy, sanctity of life, assaults on Christians and religious freedoms and much more. There will be a lively, interactive Q&A time following the presentation.
Find out what you can do to strengthen, preserve and promote marriage, family, life and liberty in Wisconsin.
CLICK HERE to learn more about the Wisconsin Christian News Expo. We hope to see you there!
The Heal Without Harm Coalition, comprised of Wisconsin Family Action, Wisconsin Right to Life, Pro-Life Wisconsin and Wisconsin Catholic Conference welcomed the introduction this past Monday of the two-bill Heal Without Harm Initiative in the state senate. The complementary bills seek to demonstrate respect for unborn children by outlawing the future exploitation of aborted children for fetal body parts and by providing scientists with ethical sources of fetal tissue from miscarried or stillborn babies. The bills are currently in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“Wisconsin Family Action is proud to be part of this unprecedented pro-life coalition,” says Julaine Appling, WFA president. “Our state has an extraordinary opportunity to lead the nation by championing research that is ethical, innovative, and effective. We look forward to a thoughtful public debate on this issue at a public hearing and hope for this legislative initiative ultimately to become the law.”
On September 25, 2017, WisEye senior producer Steve Walters discussed ethical scientific research with members of Heal Without Harm, a coalition of organizations and citizens dedicated to working with the scientific community to encourage it toward ethical research. Click HERE to watch the interview on Wisconsin Eye.
American Enterprise Institute president Arthur Brooks recently wrote online about the deception of state lotteries. He notes the majority of lottery tickets are sold to those in lower income brackets and that often lottery advertising is targeted in those communities. Many receive food stamps and other government benefits. They finance lottery tickets by cutting down on necessities such as food and payment of other bills, further entrenching poverty. Brooks calls for government to stop selling poor people a mirage of the American dream at the end of a convenience-store line.
The budget just passed in Wisconsin adds $1 million per year to the already bloated and unconstitutional lottery advertising budget. It just makes no sense to push the lottery on people who can least afford it and then turn around and give them taxpayer funded benefits. If we’re serious about alleviating poverty we need to ditch the state lottery.
Attend one of our upcoming events in your community. Click HERE for more information.
September 25, 2017 – Last week the Wisconsin legislature passed the state’s two-year $76 billion budget. Governor Walker, who has the nation’s strongest gubernatorial veto power, has already indicated 99 items he will be vetoing in full or in part. Included in this budget and not scheduled for any veto by the governor is the closing down of the state’s same-sex-only statewide domestic partnership registry that became law through then-Governor Jim Doyle’s budget in 2009. Another domestic partnership registry for state employees, whether same-sex or opposite-sex, is also shut down.
We are thrilled these domestic partnership registries are going away. The same-sex-only one, now that the courts have forced same-sex marriage on all states, is discriminatory and the other registry for state employees is expensive. More important, however, is that both registries very much undermine marriage, the state’s most important institution.
From the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC):
“This week the ERLC released a free, downloadable bulletin insert for use by your church on Anti-Gambling Sunday (September 18). In preparation for the event, here are five facts you should know about problem gambling:
1. Problem gambling is an umbrella term for all gambling behavior patterns that compromise, disrupt or damage personal, family or vocational pursuits. According to the National Council on Problem Gambling, the essential features are increasing preoccupation with gambling, a need to bet more money more frequently, restlessness or irritability when attempting to stop, “chasing” losses, and loss of control manifested by continuation of the gambling behavior in spite of mounting, serious, negative consequences.
2. When problem gambling causes significant problems or distress, it can be a sign of gambling disorder, also called gambling addiction or compulsive gambling. The American Psychiatric Association (APA) notes that some people develop a craving for gambling that is similar to the cravings for drugs or alcohol. Those with gambling disorder often hide their behavior, and may lie to family members and others to cover up their behavior and may turn to others for help with financial problems.
3. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), the standard classification of mental disorders used by mental health professionals in the United States, classifies problem gambling as a disorder if a person exhibits at least four of the following behaviors during the past year:
Need to gamble with increasing amount of money to achieve the desired excitement
Restless or irritable when trying to cut down or stop gambling
Repeated unsuccessful efforts to control, cut back on or stop gambling
Frequent thoughts about gambling (such as reliving past gambling experiences, planning the next gambling venture, thinking of ways to get money to gamble)
Often gambling when feeling distressed
After losing money gambling, often returning to get even (referred to as “chasing” one’s losses)
Lying to conceal gambling activity
Jeopardizing or losing a significant relationship, job or educational/career opportunity because of gambling
Relying on others to help with money problems caused by gambling
4. Gambling disorder tends to run in families, but environmental factors may also contribute, notes the APA. Symptoms of the disorder can begin as early as adolescence or as late as older adulthood. Men are more likely to begin at a younger age and women are more likely to begin later in life.
5. Approximately 4-6 percent of high school students are addicted to gambling, and another 10-14 percent are at risk of developing an addiction, which means that they already show signs of losing control over their gambling behavior.”
>>>Get your FREE downloadable bulletin insert HERE.
Share with your pastors and clergy and pass along to friends and family you love. If you can’t participate in Anti-Gambling Sunday, the download and information is appropriate for use at any time.