The following comes from an April 11 Catholic Voice article:
A contingent of Roman Catholic priests, parish staff members and parishioners were among the more than 200 people who crowded into a Concord City Council meeting April 5. On the agenda was a vote to choose a developer to turn the former Concord Naval Weapons Station into residential, commercial and office use.
One of the two developers who had made proposals had dropped out, leaving just one.
The Catholic group did not come to support one developer over another, but to ensure that their concerns for low-income housing, just wages and fair employment were heard.
Among the 70 people seeking to speak before the council was Father Richard Mangini, Concord native and pastor of St. Bonaventure Parish.
“We want to ensure that sound principles of justice, diversity and equality drive the project forward in addition to the best principles of economic development,” Father Mangini wrote in the remarks he prepared for the council
A living wage for workers on the proposed project was among the concerns.
“We believe from our Catholic Christian perspective that each person has a right to a living wage. Work and the economy exist for the worker and not vice versa,” he wrote in his remarks.
The Catholic group is asking, too, that project contracts stipulate that the majority of jobs will be available to the residents of Central Contra Costa County.
It’s not the last time the Catholic community will be heard from. Catholics for Justice, Equality and the Future, a coalition of priests, parish staff members who work in social justice, and parishioners, is planning to get together regularly to talk about issues that call for their attention. The coalition will speak on behalf of “people who have no voice,” said Eileen Limberg, adult faith formation director at St. Bonaventure Parish, to “make sure they get justice.”