Religious leaders call for moral state budget

By Perry Russom

March 24, 2014 Updated Mar 26, 2014 at 11:22 AM EST

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Local religious leaders are calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to amend his proposed state budget, saying it lacks morals and targets the poor.

Every Monday for the past few weeks, community members have been gathering in the shadow of the state building in downtown Binghamton to protest the governor's budget.

"If we give people something to eat because they don't have any food on an emergency basis that's fine, but being able to provide for themselves is even better," said Rabbi Barbara Goldman-Wartell of Temple Concord.

A half dozen current and former religious leaders preached their opinions early Monday evening in what they call "Moral Mondays."

They say they want to take the focus of the budget away from big business and refocus it on helping the poor and middle class.

"To notice how the middle class and the working people are shafted again and again in the budgets is really frustrating," said Rev. Douglas Taylor of Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Binghamton.

Goldman-Wartell went on to say the budget needs to have a long term push to helping people. Not just supporting them in the short term, but teaching them how to support themselves.