WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden signed an government order Sunday relaunching a White Home workplace aimed toward fostering cooperation between the federal authorities and faith-based and secular group organizations.
The order reestablishes the White Home Workplace of Religion-Based mostly and Neighborhood Partnerships, a 20-year-old initiative first put in place by President George W. Bush. The White Home mentioned the workplace’s early objectives beneath Biden will embody working to “handle the COVID-19 pandemic and increase financial restoration; fight systemic racism; enhance alternative and mobility for traditionally deprived communities; and strengthen pluralism.”
In an announcement, Biden steered that such partnerships are notably necessary at a time when the pandemic has created appreciable uncertainty and struggling.
“This isn’t a nation that may, or will, merely stand by and watch the struggling round us. That’s not who we’re. That’s not what religion calls us to be,” he mentioned.
His staff will work with “leaders of various faiths and backgrounds who’re the entrance strains of their communities in disaster and who can assist us heal, unite and rebuild.”
The workplace will probably be led by Melissa Rogers, who served in the identical function throughout President Barack Obama’s second time period. Rogers will even serve on the White Home Home Coverage Council as senior director for religion and public coverage. Josh Dickson, who was the Biden marketing campaign’s nationwide religion engagement director, will probably be deputy director.
Biden’s personal religion is in some ways central to his politics. He’s a religious Roman Catholic who attends church practically each weekend, wears rosary beads round his wrist and is understood to cite Scripture. He has been considered cautiously by the U.S. Convention of Catholic Bishops over his assist for abortion rights, nonetheless, and non secular conservatives view him warily for his guarantees to revive LGBTQ rights rolled again beneath President Donald Trump.
Within the assertion asserting the manager order, the White Home promised a dedication to “our cherished ensures of church-state separation and freedom for folks of all faiths and none,” and mentioned that the workplace “is not going to desire one religion over one other or favor spiritual over secular organizations” to pursue its work.