Post-election 2020:
Where Do We Go From Here

The Guibord Center – Religion Inside Out brought Los Angeles faith leaders and community leaders together online following the 2020 election to ground us in the power of our values. From there, we went on to address the deep concerns for the most marginalized and vulnerable in the city.

Nirinjan Singh Khalsa and Dr. Rini Ghosh delivered prayers from the Sikh and Hindu communities. Imam Jihad Turk offered opening comments from the Muslim community. Special speakers included civil rights icon Connie Rice and Rabbi Sharon Brous, IKAR.

Presenters focused on four areas of concern in Los Angeles: The Streets. Politics and Public Safety; Families and Survival; Mental and Physical Health and Access to Services; and Legal Guidance and Resources.



Overview of Breakout Sessions


The Streets – Politics and Public Safety

The Rev. James Lawson
Stephen Rohde, ICUJP
Guillermo Torres, CLUE
Moderator: Rev. Najuma Smith-Pollard


Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace   
Stephen Rohde, Chair of the Board,
“Religious Communities Must Stop Blessing War and Violence”  

Clergy and Laity United (CLUE)
Guillermo Torres, Immigration Program Director,  323-228-2753 

Remember in all your advocacy efforts to include the leaders (presence, voices, stories, etc), from the communities for which you are advocating.

Families in Crisis and in Need – Housing, Food, Survival

Celina Alvarez, Housing Works
Roland Palencia, LA Care
David Gist, Bread for the World
Brandy Muñiz, HopeNet
Moderator:  Tasneem Noor



Housing Works
Celina Alvarez, Executive Director,   323-286-9483

Bread For The World
David Gist (Regional Organizer, California)  626-394-3940

For urgent action:  

This link can be used to email our U.S. senators and representatives in Washington, DC, to urge them in the strongest terms to PRIORITIZE HUNGRY AND VULNERABLE PEOPLE in this time of COVID-19 and with the congressional responses/stimulus to the pandemic:

Let’s urge Congress to increase SNAP (food assistance) by 15% and to increase funding to global nutrition programs by $20 billion. That latter figure comes from the Interfaith Working Group on Foreign Assistance.  

At any time:

Call U.S. Congress to urge your elected leaders to prioritize vulnerable communities in stimulus packages.  You can phone the Capitol Switchboard toll free at 800-826-3688 and ask to be transferred to any office of Congress.  For other talking points on hunger advocacy, go to Bread For the World’s website and explore “Campaigns”

This graphic demonstrates how essential public food (via gov’t and public policy) is to preventing hunger:

Bread’s report using a racial equity lens to assess hunger and poverty in the US:

Racial Wealth Gap Learning Simulation!

Contact David Gist if you’d like to set up an opportunity for a group to do the Racial Wealth Gap Learning Simulation.  It’s an-eye-opening experience that can open up deeper conversation and action steps for both newcomers and experienced folks.  

LA Care Health Plan

Roland Palencia, Community Benefits Director,


As of November 2020, 1 in 5 LA residents is a member of LA Care Health Plan.  



Brandy Muñiz, Executive Director   


Los Angeles Community College District  

Francisco Rodriguez,

Fuel, economic and social mobility of our community through education. During COVID, enrollments at community colleges are going down considerably; these students are mostly poor, brown and black, and vulnerable to food and housing insecurities.

Health Issues – Physical and Mental Services

Rob Curry, Emanate Health
Jaime Garcia, Hospital Association of Southern California
Moderator:  Tahil Sharma


Emanate Health
Rob Curry, President,

Hospital Association of Southern California
Jaime Garcia, Regional Vice-President (LA County),

Department of Mental Health Helpline (24/7)  800-854-7771

National Suicide Prevention                            800-273-8255

Substance Abuse Treatment                           844-804-7500


Legal Issues and Resources

Gary Blasi, Professor Emeritus,
UCLA School of Law
Moderator:  Sable Manson




“Grounded in Faith”

Photographs: Jesse Kaplan Photography, 
with permission

“Call to Prayer”

Adhan from Fez – Morocco
with permission

“The President Sang Amazing Grace”

Written by Zoe Mulford, arranged by Jacob Garchik
Performed by Meklit and Kronos Quartet
Produced by StanfordLive  
with permission

Video and Sound Editing

Steve Miller, courtesy of Emanate Health
Additional Editing: Yolie Carrillo


With permission

Black Lives Matter, CLUE, The Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles,  Camp Stevens,
Laundry Love, IRIS, Prism, Sacred Resistance, Seeds of Hope,
Shower Program – St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Long Beach, West Valley Food Bank,
HopeNet, Housing Works, LA Voice


211 LA County, Bayan Islamic Graduate School, Temple Beth Shir Shalom, Bread for the World, CTY Housing, California Sikh Council, CLUE – Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice, CMCCE – Cecil Murray Center, El Camino College, Emanate Health, The Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles, Hollywood Food Coalition, HASC – Hospital Association of Southern California, HopeNetLA, Housing Works, ICUJP – Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace, IKAR, Immaculate Heart Community, Institute for Ecological Civilization, Islamic Center of Southern California, Los Angeles Buddhist Union, L.A. Care Health Plan, LA County Emergency Medical Services Agency, LA Voice, National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA, NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership For Change, Psyche & Salt, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, United Methodist/World Council of Churches, Urban Initiatives, Vedanta Society, WARD AME Church, Zarathushti (Zoroastrian) Community


Event Moderator

Aziza Hasan


Nirinjan Singh Khalsa
Dr. Rini Ghosh

Special Speakers

Connie Rice
Imam Jihad Turk
Rabbi Sharon Brous

Breakout Room Moderators

Rev. Dr. Najuma Smith-Pollard
Tasneem Noor
Tahil Sharma
Dr. Sable Manson

Breakout Room Leaders

Stephen Rohde – ICUJP, Rev. James Lawson  – Holman  United Methodist Church, Guillermo Torres – CLUE, Celina Alvarez – Housing Works, Roland Palencia – LA Care, David Gist – Bread for the World, Brandy Muñiz – HopeNet, Sherry Bonono – Hollywood Food Coalition, Rob Curry  – Emanate Health, Cathy Chidester – LA County Emergency Medical Services Agency, Jaime Garcia – Hospital Association of Southern California, Prof. Gary Blasi – UCLA

The Guibord Center Team

Christine Budzowski, Yolie Carrillo, Mary Kirchen, Daryn Kobata, Terry Opalek, Dr. Lisa Patriquin, Dr. Lo Sprague

Special Assistance

Lurelean Gaines, Dr. Rini Ghosh, Janet Kawamoto, Brenda Threatt, Bob Williams