FAST secures commitments for ‘one stop shop’ mental health service plan in Pinellas County

April 9, 2019. St. Pete Catalyst.

Residents of Pinellas County may soon have a single place to go when facing a mental health crisis, thanks to commitments secured by Faith and Action for Strength Together (FAST) Monday night at Tropicana Field.

FAST is a grassroots coalition of more than 40 religious congregations throughout Pinellas County. The organization gathered 2,500 people at Tropicana Field to ask public officials to commit to proposed solutions for systemic problems facing the county.

FAST puts pressure on City of St. Pete to tackle affordable housing crisis

April 8, 2019. St. Pete Catalyst.

The growing housing affordability crisis continues to dominate community conversations, and Monday night it will take center stage at Tropicana Field.

A coalition of more than 40 Pinellas religious congregations known as Faith and Action for Strength Together (FAST) plans to bring together 3,000 Pinellas County residents during its annual Nehemiah Action this evening, to hold St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman accountable for keeping his promise of spending $15 million Penny for Pinellas funds on affordable housing before 2030.

Thousands of people plan St. Petersburg rally on lack of affordable housing funds

April 8, 2019. WTSP.COM

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Thousands of people are planning to hold a rally because they’re upset about the lack of spending on affordable housing in St. Petersburg.

Around 3,000 people are expected to gather around 7 p.m. Monday at Tropicana Field.

The group, Faith and Action for Strength Together (F.A.S.T.), is upset Mayor Rick Kriseman doesn’t plan on spending $15 million for affordable housing until 2023, according to a news release from Ephiphany Summers. They hope to put pressure on Kriseman to begin spending on affordable housing using Penny for Pinellas funds as soon as next year. The group hopes city leaders find another way to pay for and make affordable housing a priority.

BCC approves resolution pledging Penny funds to affordable housing

March 11, 2019. Tampa Bay Newspapers.

CLEARWATER — Members of Faith and Action for Strength Together asked Pinellas County Commissioners for assurances that the next round of Penny for Pinellas funds would be spent on affordable housing as promised.

FAST, which is an organization made up of members of church congregations throughout the county, is concerned that future commissioners might not have the same mindset as the current ones about the importance of affordable housing.

Two Pinellas School Board members split on FAST questions

March 19, 2018. TBO.com

ST. PETERSBURG — A crowd of 3,000 peered down Monday evening on two Pinellas County School Board members faced with two questions regarding discipline and school data.

Will they advocate for a specific restorative practice program, different from the one the school district contracts now? And will they advocate for publishing quarterly reports detailing suspensions, arrests and reading scores broken down by school and race?

After two roundabout answers, a hand-drawn tally reflected the results: Two “yes” answers for Joanne Lentino; two “no” answers for Linda Lerner.