By Caty Youso, PJALS Intern

As a PJALS intern for the last 6 months, I have learned so much about what the organization stands for. I am glad to be here because what I have stood for most of my life very much aligns with PJALS’ mission and values.

PJALS has provided me many opportunities to be involved in my community. I’m looking forward to seeing how the skills and education I have obtained while here play out in my future endeavors as a community member and as a professional.

Now that our wonderful annual Peace and Justice Action Conference has ended, I am looking forward to my work in the Stop the Nuclear Arms Race Campaign. It is vital that we come together to make sure that the United States’ nuclear weapons never be used, and that no one person has the authority to push that “button.” There should be more outreach and education in our community regarding nuclear weapons so that we can feel empowered to demand answers to our questions such as Is Fairchild clear of their nuclear weapons? Why hasn’t the government cleaned up the Midnight uranium mine on the Spokane Indian Reservation, which has been closed for decades and has killed many people due to uranium poisoning? Why did Boeing just get a contract to revise the nation’s nuclear weapons?

I am also excited to be involved in the Poor People’s Campaign. I have always admired Martin Luther King Jr. for his strength, determination, and advocacy. We need to finish fulfilling his dream of confronting racism, poverty, militarism, and ecological devastation. Thankfully, PJALS provides myself and others opportunities to advocate for these types of changes.