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Dorothy's Place

co-operating out of poverty

Social Justice

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What is Social Justice?

Center for Non Violence and Social Justice Definition

Social justice embodies the vision of a society that is equitable and in which all members are physically and psychologically safe.* Social justice also demands that all people have a right to basic human dignity and to have their basic economic needs met. Our commitment to social justice recognizes that health is affected by a host of social factors. It is not possible to address trauma and violence without also wrestling with poverty, racism, sexism, classism, homophobia and all other forms of stigma. Because of this, we cannot ignore deep seated inequalities as we seek answers to problems like violence and trauma. Rather, we must struggle with these problems clearly and honestly.

*From: Barry S. Levy and Victor Sidel. The nature of social injustice and its impact on public health, p.8. In: Social Injustice and Public Health, Barry S. Levy and Victor Sidel, editors. Oxford Press, 2006, 529 pp.

What is Trauma? 

Center for Non Violence and Social Justice Definition

Franciscan Workers are committed to the practice of social justice, starting in our neighborhood, Salinas’ Chinatown, where Dorothy’s Place serves the poor, the traumatized, the chronically homeless.

With love, respect, and compassion, the Franciscan Workers of Junipero Serra provide essential services and transitional support to people experiencing the injustice of homelessness and extreme poverty.

Franciscan Workers of Junipero Serra Core Values

We value the dignity of every person with respect for individual worth and human potential.

We promote collaboration in moving toward common goals. We are a community committed to caring and supportive relationships with each other, Dorothy’s Place guests, and other service providers.

We commit to becoming culturally competent by respecting differences and equal rights and freedoms. We implement pluralism, gender responsiveness, and inclusiveness.

We serve with integrity, professional excellence, accountability, and responsible stewardship, because we are committed to maintaining the trust of those who support or utilize our services.

We respect each person’s agency, self-determination, and timing.

We are committed to social justice, advocating for individual opportunities and systemic change.

As an innovative organization, we are receptive to new ideas.

We believe in the power of mutual healing, recovery, and restoration of self.

We are grateful.

With the support of a generous community, we are able to provide hot meals that rival many restaurants in quality to anyone and everyone that comes to our table at Dorothy’s Kitchen. Our Drop-in Center is blessed to provide restrooms, showers, and clean clothes daily to promote basic human dignity, along with an abundance of respect and a necessary absence of judgement based on social environment. Women Alive! Emergency Shelter provides a safe environment in which to seek help and heal. House of Peace Transitional Program relies upon collaboration with many health and social services and the power of community to provide individual opportunities for growth. Our Health Clinic values equity in medicine and our @risK gallery offers the opportunity to exercise creativity and diverse cultural expression, while St. Clare’s Corner demonstrates how small communities can share their resources with a spirit of empowerment that dismisses charity.

We recognize that deep-seated trauma is pervasive in our community and is the root cause of chronic homelessness. Everything we do in service to our community is trauma informed.