Our Issues

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Public Safety

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The Public Safety Task Force exists to develop and build relationships that promote equity and justice while providing for the safety and protection of life and property. We’re committed to developing relationships both inside and outside of our task force that encourage mutual respect for each other.

We have been working with representatives of the police to address racism, reduce violence, and increase equity in how police resources are used for the protection of our communities.

We've Won

  • Expanded police officer training
  • Revised recruitment and hiring practices in the Pittsburgh Police Department
  • Better data tracking and a body camera policy

Task Force Chair

Carol Ballance

Meetings

4th Thursday of every month, 7:00pm-8:30pm, Wesley AME Zion Church
(Check the calendar for changes)

Public Safety Updates

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A City Divided: Race, Fear, and the Law in Police Confrontations

Dr. David Harris On July 26, 2020, David Harris gave a sobering presentation, looking backward and forward into the future, pondering the challenges of Public Safety in our time. We hope you were able to join, but if you missed it or would like to watch it again, you can see the recording of the [...]

Community Conversation on Countywide Citizens Police Review Board

The Allegheny County Council is set to consider establishing a Countywide Citizens Police Review Board, PIIN invites you to join us and members of County Council for an important conversation and opportunity to share your input. We need a police review board to establish accountability. Transparency and accountability are critical to advancing 21st century policing [...]

Residents, activists concerned about racist graffiti in Swissvale

Residents and activists on Wednesday decried a recent incident of racist graffiti at a Swissvale transit parklet and demanded a stronger response from the borough government. The group of eight that held a press conference outside of the Swissvale council meeting said they were “troubled” by graffiti on a garbage can in early November that [...]

Public Safety Media Coverage

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Residents, activists concerned about racist graffiti in Swissvale

Residents and activists on Wednesday decried a recent incident of racist graffiti at a Swissvale transit parklet and demanded a stronger response from the borough government. The group of eight that held a press conference outside of the Swissvale council meeting said they were “troubled” by graffiti on a garbage can in early November that [...]

PIIN Releases Statement of Christchurch Shooting

Clergy, Spiritual Leaders and other leaders in PIIN, Once again, this world finds itself responding to another senseless mass shooting that took place in a house of worship. The hatred in this country and in the world has once again risen to a level that the infringement upon the sacred is not even questioned. Where [...]

Applaud this training in the city police force

The Public Safety Task Force of the Pennsylvania Interfaith Impact Network (of which I am a member) has been working to ensure violent confrontations between the police and residents of this city are things of the past. A hopeful sign has been a move by the Pittsburgh police department to add new modules to the training and retraining of its officers. The modules are: “Procedural Justice,” “Implicit Bias” and “Racial Reconciliation.” The first two have been implemented and the third is soon to follow.

Public Education

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PIIN’s Education Task Force is actively engaged with community stakeholders, parents, and the faith community to establish community schools and guarantee the funding needed to provide a high-quality education to every child.

The spiritual leaders of PIIN believe that congregations are community institutions and that our communities are Holy Ground. As a faith-based organization, PIIN believes that the faith community is a sacred partner with the schools.

We've Won

  • A Community Schools policy for the Pittsburgh Public School District.
  • Stopped corporate education reformers from derailing the Pittsburgh Public School Board’s hiring of Dr. Anthony Hamlet.
  • A fairer funding formula for state tax dollars devoted to education.

Task Force Chair

Rev. Darlene Figgs

Meetings

2nd Tuesday of every month, 5:30pm-7:00pm, Carrone Baptist Church
(Check the calendar for changes)

Public Education Updates

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PIIN co-hosts Imagine PPS session with the Pittsburgh Pubic Schools (PPS)

On Thursday, February 6, more than sixty community stakeholders joined PIIN and the leaders and staff of Pittsburgh Public Schools (PPS) for an Imagine PPS engagement session held at Pittsburgh King PreK-8. Imagine PPS is a new city-wide initiative working together with community champions to re-imagine how the school district delivers education. During the session [...]

Pittsburgh Public Schools Commit to Improving Equity

On November 7, Pittsburgh Public Schools unveiled a new phase of its efforts to bridge racial equity gaps in the city’s public schools. On Track to Equity: Integrating Equity Throughout PPS a comprehensive implementation plan that seeks to reduce racial disparities throughout the district and elevate the achievement of African American students comes on the [...]

PIIN Releases Statement on recent reporting of the Pittsburgh Public School Superintendent Dr. Anthony Hamlet, the district administration, and the Board of Directors

On Tuesday, May 29, 2019 at 11:00 am, the Pennsylvania Interfaith Impact Network (PIIN) and allies will held a news conference at the Pittsburgh Board of Education, 341 S. Bellefield St. Pittsburgh, PA 15213 to address concerns over the recent reporting of the Pittsburgh Public School Superintendent Dr. Anthony Hamlet, the district administration, and the [...]

Public Education Media Coverage

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PIIN Releases Statement on recent reporting of the Pittsburgh Public School Superintendent Dr. Anthony Hamlet, the district administration, and the Board of Directors

On Tuesday, May 29, 2019 at 11:00 am, the Pennsylvania Interfaith Impact Network (PIIN) and allies will held a news conference at the Pittsburgh Board of Education, 341 S. Bellefield St. Pittsburgh, PA 15213 to address concerns over the recent reporting of the Pittsburgh Public School Superintendent Dr. Anthony Hamlet, the district administration, and the [...]

Ratepayer Justice

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ALCOSAN is under a federal mandate to overhaul our region’s sewer system to reduce the discharge of sewage into our rivers. PIIN has worked with the Clean Rivers Campaign to urge a green-first approach to solving this problem.

We have also taken the lead to ensure that ratepayers — especially low-income residents — aren’t stuck with water bills they can’t afford to pay. As an Our Water Campaign coalition partner, we are also on the front lines of advocating for safe, affordable, publicly controlled water in Pittsburgh.

We've Won

  • A consumer assistance program to help low-income residents with the ALCOSAN bills.
  • A commitment from City and County leaders to a green-first infrastructure plan.
  • A winter moratorium on residential water shutoffs for anyone at or below 250% of the federal poverty line.

Task Force Chair

Rev. Vincent Kolb

Ratepayer Justice Updates

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Join PIIN on Sept. 26 for an Our Water Town Hall

Pittsburgh residents have long recognized the need to fix the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) to ensure that every family in our city has access to safe, affordable drinking water. We’ve already seen what happens when private corporations like Paris-based company, Veolia, come to our city and take over our public assets. Pittsburgh cannot [...]

Ratepayer Justice Media Coverage

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What Would Restructuring PWSA Look Like? Tulsa, OK and Indianapolis Have An Idea

At a public meeting Tuesday, officials from Tulsa, Okla. and Indianapolis, Ind. talked about the dramatic changes their city made to the provision of water and sewer services. They presented to a mayoral panel tasked with deciding how best to address the systemic challenges facing Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA): crumbling infrastructure and lead issues [...]

Petition started for green infrastructure sewage project in Greenfield

The residents of Four Mile Run, an isolated neighborhood on the edge of Greenfield, have wanted one thing for a very long time: a major sewage infrastructure project to alleviate its flooding problems. The neighborhood nestled in a valley south of Oakland consistently sees flooding in heavy rains, including the overflowing of Saline Street in September 2016.

‘Not Another Flint’ Town Hall Draws Standing-Room-Only Crowd

Residents asked questions about the effects of lead poisoning, the cost of lead line replacement and the responsibilities of local landlords at a panel discussion about water issues Tuesday night. The standing room-only event, dubbed “Not Another Flint,” drew more than 100 people to the Kingsley Association in Larimer. It was hosted by the Our [...]

Criminal Justice Reform

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Over-incarceration — and the lingering disability frequently following it — disproportionately impacts communities of color and unjustly denies people the right to earn a decent living, secure affordable housing, and more.

The Criminal Justice Reform Task Force was formed to reduce the mass incarceration of indigent people by targeting the broken elements of the criminal justice system that perpetuate the school-to-prison pipeline and over-policing. Currently, our Task Force is working on ending the practice of out-of-school suspensions for our youngest students in Pittsburgh Public Schools as well as advocating for more counselors in the school setting.