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National Day of Witness for a Presidential Executive Order to Ban Torture

Wednesday, November 12

10:30 am Gathering at Center Church Parish House downtown Hartford

(60 Gold St in Hartford; corner of Gold and Lewis Streets, NE corner of Bushnell Park)

Directions, parking info and a little map here (on the map, North is to the left)

11:00 Meeting at Senator Doddís office (30 Lewis Street)

  • Vigil outside
  • Arrive by 11:45 for the press conference

Noon Press Conference outside Doddís office, concluding by 12:30

Dear Friends,

I am writing to give you the details about our local plans in conjunction with the National Day of Witness for a Presidential Executive Order to Ban Torture on Wed, Nov. 12th.   The national effort is being organized by the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), and delegations of religious leaders and people of faith will be meeting with Members of Congress or their staff in cities across the country.  There will also be a solemn procession to a public witness at the White House in Washington, D.C.

Our interfaith delegation of CT religious leaders includes two bishops, two rabbis, the President of the Islamic Society of North America, and the dean or president of two seminaries.  The delegation will:

  • Present Sen Doddís staff with a list of endorsers from CT (provided by NRCAT);
  • Ask the Senator to endorse the Declaration of Principles for an Executive Order banning torture;
  • Ask him to urge the President-elect to issue an Executive Order banning torture as one of his first official actions; and
  • Ask him to support the creation of a Select Committee of Congress to investigate the use of torture since 9/11.

At 10:30, we will gather briefly at the Center Church Parish House, before walking to Doddís office for a brief interfaith prayer service in the courtyard.

The delegation will go into the office for the meeting at 11:00, while others will stand vigil outside.  (We will have a few of NRCATís black&white banners saying "torture is wrong" and "Torture is a Moral Issue"; other anti-torture posters and banners welcome.)

We anticipate that the meeting will end around 11:45, and we will hold a press conference in the courtyard at Noon.  We anticipate that a member of the Senatorís staff will join us to read a statement from Senator Dodd.

We encourage participation by people who are not part of the delegation, especially at the time of the press conference.  We welcome the presence and witness of those who can join us at 10:30 and stand in vigil outside (with respite from the weather available at the Center Church parish house). 

We hope that a larger number of people will be able to arrive between 11:30 and 11:45 and be present for the press conference.

Parking is available on surrounding streets or in the garage around the corner on Pearl Street, between Lewis St and Main St.  The downtown CT Transit bus stops are in the same block of Main St, one street to the east of Lewis.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me.  We look forward to seeing you on the 12th.


John Humphries
Reclaiming the Prophetic Voice steering committee