Puppies Puppy | Photo courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Patrol

Plus more on grand openings and equal pay in Arizona.

Bark in the Park

The lunch crowd in Downtown Phoenix will have the option to add a side of cuteness to this Friday’s food truck fare. 

In addition to Food Truck Friday in downtown Phoenix’s Civic Space Park, the Arizona Humane Society is bringing puppies to the party from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

It’s part of a collaboration between the Humane Society and Downtown Phoenix Inc. called “Bark in the Park.” The event is free, and there will be a selfie booth where participants can cozy up to the pups, and grow their Instagram likes in one fell swoop. 

The Light of the World

La Luz del Mundo Church just west of downtown Phoenix opened its doors Sunday after over a decade of construction. The domed structure, just off of Interstate 10 near 16th Avenue, held a ribbon cutting ceremony followed by a two-hour Spanish service. 

According to the Arizona Republic, the church has been in the works since 2005. It faced setbacks from the 2008 financial crisis and slow construction times from an all volunteer crew.  

La Luz del Mundo, or light of the world in English, a Pentecostal congregation that originated in Mexico in 1926, follows the teachings of current church leader Naason Joaquin Garcia, sometimes referred to as the Apostle of Christ. 

Garcia has been a source of controversy for the congregation. He is currently fighting sex crime allegations in Los Angeles, California after being charged in June 2019.

The building holds roughly 4,700 parishioners, and photos from the Republic show the interior is mostly white with gold accents and the dome painted with a fresco of the sky leading to a sun at its center. 

Tucson Mayor Pushes State to Lead Equal Pay

Tucson leads Arizona in the fight for equal pay after adopting a city ordinance in 2015. However, Tucson mayor Regina Romero told local television station KGUN 9 that despite improvements from that ordinance, there is still more work to be done. 

She told the station she still sees women getting paid at different rates than men, although the report from KGUN didn’t specify if this was for the same work or differing jobs.

 “It is not just a woman issue. It’s an issue that affects our economy. It affects families, and it should not happen in this day and age in the United States of America,” Romero told the station. 

Romero is pushing the federal government to recognize the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, which states, “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.”

Virginia became the 38th state to ratify the amendment in January; however, a Justice Department Memo states the deadline to ratify expired in 1982. Virginia is currently fighting that decision in court.