Our church created the JXN Community Forum series in 2005, and co-hosted it with the Jackson District Library from 2006-2017.  In 2015, the League of Women Voters came on as a co-host after guest hosting the candidate forum.  At the end of the 2016-2017 series, UUCEL concluded its formal role in organizing the forums, but the forums continue with the Jackson District Library and the League of Women Voters co-organizing.  The complete list of forums during that UUCEL sponsored is below:

2016-2017 Forums:

September – Jackson Candidate Forums – County Offices; State & Congress
October – How to Vote the Whole Ballot
November – Historic Districts
December: Ken Burns Documentary: Sharp Ministers
January: Foster Care Challenges for Foster Children
February: Restorative Justice, Restorative Community
March: Legislative Update for Seniors
April: World War I and America: America’s Place in the World
May: City Manager Update on Downtown Development

2015-2016 Forums:

September – Jackson Mayoral Candidate Forum
October – Legalizing Marijuana
November – Fireside Chat with Patrick Burtch, City Manager
December: Enbridge Line 5
January: Minimum Wage and Living Wage
February : The impact of Land Treaties in Michigan on Native Americans
March: Refugees in Michigan: Where do they come from? What do they go through to get here?
April: Water, Water Everywhere – Jackson’s water system, policies, water rights and quality
May: Grand River Environmental Action Team: working on the protection and restoration of the Upper Grand River watershed in Jackson County for 25 years!

2014 -2015 Forums:

September: Jackson Anchor Initiative
October: Make Your Vote Count: Redistricting
November – Meet A.L.I.C.E. in Jackson
January – Extreme Weather
February – Cradle to Career: What’s Happening in Jackson County?
March – Selma and Voting Rights Today
April – Consumer Privacy
May – Building a Bikeable Community

2013-2014 Forums:

September 19: Forum on Human Trafficking
October 10: The New Jim Crow and Incarceration
November 14: Adoption Equality in Michigan
December 12: Minimum Wage
January 16: Human Rights in Jackson
February 20: What’s in YOUR food?
March 20: Natural Death Care: Home Funeral and Green Burial
April: The Loving Story:  Love in the time of Jim Crow
May – Chicks in the City: Urban Agriculture

2012-2013 Forums:

September 20: A Vision for Downtown Jackson
October 18: A Review of Michigan Ballot Proposals
November 15: Michigan’s Indigent Defense System
December 13: The Arts in Jackson
January 17: Water Quality in the Wake of Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations
February 21: Poverty—It’s Not What You Think
March 21: Understanding the Charter School Debate
April 18: Reproductive Freedom in MI: Recent Legislation
May 16: School Libraries in the Future
June13: Freedom Forum – Where Are We on Race?

2011-2012 forums:

September 15: Looking Forward
October 20: Climate Change: The Evidence
November 17: State of Unions
December 15: Bullied—A Student, A School, and a Case that Made History
January 19: Anti-Bullying Part 2
February 16: Where Soldiers Come From
March 16: Dive
April 19: The Status of Recycling in Jackson
May 17: Health Care for Jackson’s Uninsured and Under-insured
July 19: Local Ballot Issues

2010-2011 forums:

September 16: Immigration Issues from AZ to MI
October 21: Pets and The Economy – Keeping Best Friends Together
November 18: Primaries, Pork, and Partisanship
January 20: The Grand River Expedition 2010, A Virtual Tour Jackson, MI
February 17: Medical Marijuana Revisited: Grassroots Medicine, The Michigan Medical Marijuana Act
March 17: Michigan’s Budget – What would you Cut?
April 21: Partial Viewing of GASLAND Documentary Film
May 19: To Be Determined

2009-2010 forums:

September 17: Health Care: Where Are We Now?
October 15: U.S. Military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Policy
November 19: Food
December 10: LIVE FREE
January 21: Math Required to Graduate From Michigan High Schools
February 18: Community Gardening in Jackson
March 18: Why Fantasy Literature is Good for Children (and Adults Too)!
April 15: Landscaping for Wildlife
May 20: You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train

2008-2009 forums:

September 18: Forum on Stem Cell Research
October 16: Proposal 1: Legalize Medical Marijuana
November 14: Sacred Storytelling
December 11: Loving the Unhappy: A Program on Holiday Sadness
December 14: Buying Locally
January 15: What’s Gone Wrong with Our Economy and What Needs to Be Done About It
February 19: Darwin and Evolution: Common Misconceptions
March 11: Stories from the Great Depression
March 19: The Face of Poverty in Jackson
April 16: Michigan’s Energy Future
May 21: Losing Our News

2007-2008 forums:

September 10: The Cost of the War Dialogue & Concert for Peace
September 27: Banned Books—Why? Why Not?
October 24: Building a More Inclusive Community for People with Disabilities
November 15: Getting to Work to Overcome Poverty
December 20: Domestic Violence: How Can We Help?
January 10: Who Needs Universal Healthcare?
February 21: Adoption Stories
March 20: The Big Read: Navigating through cultures with “Bless Me, Ultima”
April 17: “Entertaining Ourselves to Death”
May 15: Religion and Homosexuality: A viewing of the documentary “For the Bible Tells Me So”

2006-2007 forums:

August 17, 2006: “The Marriage of Science and Religion”
September 21: Creating a Culture of Nonviolence Among Youth.
October 19: The Future of Affirmative Action in Michigan.
November 16: Community-based Food Systems.
December: Global Warming, Part I: An Inconvenient Truth
Jan. 18: Global Warming, Part II
Feb 15: America’s Role in the World
March 15: Local Race Relations
April 5: Tainted Legacy: 9/11 and the Ruin of Human Rights (Book Discussion)
April 19: Dissent
May 17: Mental Illness Awareness Month: What can we Do to Decrease Stigma?
June 21: Religious Tolerance: Are we really “the Land of the Free?”

2005-2006 forums:

October 6 – Straight from the Heart.
October 20 – Parents as Spiritual Guides Series, Part I – Wonder.
November 3 – Super Size Me.
November 17 – Parents as Spiritual Guides Series, Part II – Courage.
December 1 – Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price
December 15 – Parents as Spiritual Guides Series, Part III – Rituals and Celebrations.
January 19: End of Life Questions I: Medical and Legal Issues
February 2: Prison Reform
February 16: End of Life Questions II: Ethical and Spiritual Issues
March 2: Fair Trade Coffee: What’s that all about?
March 16: Poverty: How Bad Is It? What Can We Do?
April 6: Women’s Health Care
April 20: The Patriot Act
May 4: Abortion Rights I.
May 18: The Battle Over Abortion: Seeking Common Ground in a Divided Nation.