Welcome to the Roc/ACTS official website

December 6, 2018 Board Release

Rynn Reed, New Lead Organizer

We are looking forward to working with Rynn Reed, our new full time Roc/ACTS organizer!
She's just returned from the Gamaliel Organizer orientation in Chicago, spent a day talking to childcare advocates in Rochester, and flew home to Brooklyn. She'll be moving to Rochester and starting on December 18th.

Rynn's energy and commitment to social justice is contagious! She has worked for a progressive economic think tank, organized in the field on political campaigns, helped unionize her workplace, and has administrative experience.

Rynn will be reaching out to board members and clergy to meet the week of the 18th. We are hoping you will have time in your schedule some time that week to meet with her.
We are blessed to have her on board.

City Newspaper(Rochester, NY)
October 18, 2017

                Here's a way to combat poverty and racism
     The writer of the letter "The Silence of Our White Leadership" describes
her frustrations at the limited impact of her efforts in effectively addressing the
poverty and racism that persist in our community (and by extension our nation
and our world). She reports a lifetime of efforts to alleviate such problems on
both individual and small group bases and notes the feeling of "what more can I
     One suggestion would be to consider the activities of the Rochester Alliance
of Communities Transforming Society.
     Roc/ACTS https://sites.google.com/site/rochesteracts/
This local affiliate of the Chicago-based Gamaliel Organization is an
alliance of 24 faith-based organizations of mixed denominations who believe that,
while charity and advocacy are fitting responses to immediate needs, they are not
the way in which these problems will be solved. That will require the fundamental
transformation of the structures and systems that support and sustain poverty,
racism, sexism, etc. in our society.
     Roc/ACTS believes this can best be achieved by developing power through
shared values and by organizing the people directly impacted (and, of course, of
money). In the four years Roc/ACTS has been in our community, we have begun
this work with a grassroots listening campaign that asked people to identify the
most pressing problems facing the community at large. Their responses led to the
establishment of three task forces (education, poverty and Jobs, and Criminal
Justice) charged with formulating issues and working to bring about structural
     Working with other interest groups and the people affected by the
problems, we've been instrumental to date in:
• Increasing county funding for childcare (so that parents could go to work
assured of the well-being of their children), and
• Raising the age for incarceration in New York State (so that 16- and 17-
year-olds don't end up on a path to lifelong crime from being imprisoned with
     We are currently working on supporting community efforts to significantly
revise the defective accountability mechanisms for complaints of police
misconduct and in raising the wages of those (mostly women of color) who make
up the bulk of our home-based health-care workers.
     Much work remains to be done. We need all the help we can get, so our
task forces are open to anyone in the community (member of an affiliate or not)
who wants to work with us.
     On November 2 at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church (304 Joseph
Avenue), we will be holding our annual Public Action event, at which we will be
presenting our current issues to community leaders and asking for their
commitment to work with us on exposing and eliminating the causes of economic
and racial injustice here in our community. All are invited to participate.

Robert Insull, PhD.
Insull is a retired clinical psychologist who co-chairs the Roc/ACTS poverty and jobs task force.

Click here for the Raise the Wage handout

September 2017 E-news now available

Rochester ACTS Fundraising
Your financial support is needed today

Thanks to people like yourself we’ve had a successful year. From one end of Monroe County to the other, members of congregations and organizations got involved and supported the work that we are doing.

I suspect that you value this movement as much as I do. In order to continue our organizing we need your financial support.

Today is an excellent day to contribute. Please click here to make a donation.

No matter what your faith tradition, you and I share deeply felt values about justice, dignity and respect. We are coming together across racial and ethnic lines, in the face of efforts to divide and conquer us. And we are joining together just as scapegoating and hate crimes are on the rise.

You’ve seen this trick before – stir the pot, inviting “us” to separate from “them.”

Whether it’s campaign trail talk about “law and order,” “get tough on drugs” “makers and takers,” “Real Americans,” or “build a wall,” we’re invited to eye each other with contempt and forget our common daily struggles.

And the result? We’re seeing it right now. As I write this letter, elected representatives in Washington DC are considering legislation that takes healthcare away from seniors, people with disabilities and workers struggling with low wages, while giving hundreds of billions in tax cuts to the wealthy and corporations.

We need to build a powerful movement, rooted locally, that brings all of us together. Whether you have grown up with privilege or whether you have faced obstacles and have been marginalized, all of us, together, must have our voices heard.

I consider you part of that movement.

More RESULTS? See It has been a productive year at Roc/ACTS!

Faith community tackling racism

Democrat and Chronicle coverage

The clergy have already embarked on some discussions of racism around Rochester under the umbrella of the organization Roc/ACTS, which promotes progressive policies. Roc/ACTS has collaborated with local churches to promote conversations about race, accompanied by facilitators.

Rabbi Drorah Setel of Irondequoit's Temple Emanu-El’s said that attempts to delegitimize the worth of some people has led to historical ugliness, such as the devastation of the Holocaust.

"Racism is a terrible fragmentation of God's creation," she said.

Sacred Conversations on Race

WXXI coverage

And Pastor Wanda Wilson with Open Arms Christian Fellowship Ministries, says it's great all these congregations are coming together to address this, but she says it's time to move beyond the personal level of racism, and take it to another level -- institutional racism.

"How are we actually going to bring down those walls. The institutionalized racism in housing, in employment, in education, in the criminal justice system. What are we actually going to do about it, and we need to bring ourselves together as one to combat it," she said.


Recent Announcements

  • Next Clergy and Religious Leaders Caucus Meeting Clergy/Religious Leaders Caucus LuncheonFebruary 20, Tuesday, 12:00 - 1:30 PM(Note: Location Rotates Monthly)TBA
    Posted Jan 31, 2018, 8:38 AM by Robert Genthner
  • NEXT Task Force meetings: EDUCATION:               4th Thursday, February 22 at 7:00-8:30 PM at First Unitarian Church, 220 Winton Rd SPOVERTY/JOB            1st Tuesday, March 6 at 6:30-8:00 ...
    Posted Feb 14, 2018, 9:36 AM by Robert Genthner
  • NEXT Board of Directors Meeting Roc/ACTS Board Meeting Wednesday, March 7, 2018 4:30- 6 pm 1199 SEIU Office on second floor - old Sears Building 259 Monroe Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607Board meetings are ...
    Posted Feb 14, 2018, 9:35 AM by Robert Genthner
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