• Kentucky DREAMer: Marco Saavedra
    My name is Marco Saavedra. I have lived in the United States since I was 3 years old. My family came to the United States in 1993 in search for work & education. We were subsistence farmers in Oaxaca, Mexico & my young parents believed there would be more opportunity in New York. Through scholarships I was able to attend Deerfield Academy & then Kenyon College. Since graduating with an undergraduate degree in sociology I have worked to stop deportations in Ohio, Kentucky, & throughout the country. The desperate need for change is most visible amongst the detained & separated families I have grown to know. Changes in immigration law would allow my parents to see their family after 20 years of separation. It would allow for my cousins to continue onto higher education. It would allow my nieces & nephews to grow without the fear of losing their parents. Ideally changes in law would coincide with a personal conversion of welcoming the stranger. Today, I am part of a movement made of DREAMers, undocumented families in Kentucky and across the country, and allies – all committed to compassionate and just immigration reform. We stand together as Americans, as neighbors, as brothers and sisters. The time is now!
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  • MAY 19: NIA Worship Experience to Affirm Our Love of God and the Stranger
    We are closer to reforming our broken immigration system than we have been for many years. However, the outcome is far from sure. At this historic moment, Christians have a unique role to play in the achievement of a fair system that reflects biblical values. For More Information: Rev. Anthony Everett - [email protected] Steve Pavey - [email protected] Rev. Chal Knox - [email protected]
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  • MAY 16: Christian Leaders Immigration Luncheon
    We are closer to reforming our broken immigration system than we have been for many years. However, the outcome is far from sure. At this historic moment, Christians have a unique role to play in the achievement of a fair system that reflects biblical values. First United Methodist Church 200 W High St Lexington, KY For More Information: Steve Pavey - [email protected] Rev. Chal Knox - [email protected]
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  • MAY 17: Biblically-Based Advocacy Strategies for Immigration Reform
    We are closer to reforming our broken immigration system than we have been for many years. However, the outcome is far from sure. At this historic moment, Christians have a unique role to play in the achievement of a fair system that reflects biblical values. Estamos casi al punto de lograr una reforma de nuestro sistema inmigratorio roto. Pero nada es seguro. En este momento historico, tenemos un papel muy importante como cristianos. Nosotros podemos asegurar que alcanzaremos un sistema justo lo cual refleja los valores biblicos. Location: Embrace UMC (Epworth Campus) 1015 N. Limestone Lexington, KY For More Information: Steve Pavey - [email protected] Rev. Chal Knox - [email protected]
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  • Support Compassionate and Just Immigration Reform
    “I was a stranger and you welcomed me…” – Jesus (Matthew 25:35) Dear Kentucky Legislators, As our nation debates immigration reform, our faith compels us to advocate on behalf of the immigrants who are part of our churches and our communities. When we open our Bibles, we read of God’s special concern for the immigrant (Deut.10:18, Psalm 146:9), and we take to heart the command to take special care of the immigrant, particularly as we ourselves are people with an immigrant history (Lev. 19:33-34, Ex. 23:9). When we look up from our Bibles, we see how immigrants—including many who are presently undocumented—are integral parts of our faith, school, and work communities. Together, we are neighbors and children of God. When one of us suffers, we all suffer (1 Cor. 12:26). Together, undocumented immigrants in Kentucky and their allies, want to create opportunities for all to be right with the law, embrace the responsibilities of citizenship and preserve their families. Presently, the law provides no avenue for this vision of compassion, justice, and hospitality to be possible. For these reasons, we urge you to support reforms to our nation’s immigration laws that meet these principles. As we are called to do, we pray for "kings and all those in authority" (1 Tim. 2:2), including you, our legislators in Kentucky, who have the opportunity to do the right thing. As you work on immigration reform, know that you have our support and our prayers to make the best decision possible for our brothers and sisters in Kentucky and the nation. We will be working to further educate and mobilize Kentucky’s congregations and faith leaders (your constituents) around this pressing issue. Toward that end, we invite you to join with people of faith across Kentucky who are taking the “I Was a Stranger…” challenge, which takes its name directly from Matthew 25:35, where Jesus says that by welcoming a stranger, we may be welcoming Him. Dive into Scripture by reading a short passage of Scripture each day for 40 consecutive days that speaks to God’s heart for immigrants and to pray for the immigrants in their community. See for yourself what God has to say on this issue, and open your heart and mind to seeing how these Scriptures speak to you. Thank you for your service to Kentucky and for taking the time to consider steps to preserve Kentucky’s families, communities, and moral commitment to the dignity of each person. Respectfully, Kentucky People of Faith
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  • April 10: Rally for Immigration Reform & Legalization with Dignity in Lexington, Kentucky
    For too long, our communities have suffered under a defective and outdated immigration system that stifles our economic growth, makes political scapegoats out of immigrants, and tears families apart. The time is now for justice. The time is now for citizenship! Por demasiado tiempo, nuestras comunidades han sufrido bajo un sistema migratorio defectuoso y anticuado que ahoga nuestro crecimiento económico, explota a los inmigrantes y destroza familias. Ahora es el momento para la justicia. Ahora es el momento para dar ciudadanía a todos! EVENT DETAILS We will gather at Triangle Park downtown Lexington at 11am. The program begins at noon. FOR MORE INFORMATION phone: 859-270-5307 email: [email protected]
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  • Tell Senator Schumer: Protect LGBT Families in Immigration Bill
    Dear Senator Schumer: As New Yorkers and as leaders of diverse faiths and backgrounds, we write to you today with thanks and a reminder. Senator Schumer, we acknowledge and applaud your sincere friendship with the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community over many years. You stood on the right side of history when it wasn’t as popular as it is today and no one will forget that. Today, we call upon you to lead again by including equal protections for LGBT Americans and their families in comprehensive immigration reform legislation. Same-sex bi-national couples should not be forced to choose between their love for America and their love for each other. These couples are our congregants, friends, and leaders in our communities. They are created in the image of God, just like all people, and should be protected as equals by the law. As President Obama, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and so many others have said, LGBT Americans and their families deserve the dignity of the same family immigration rights as all other Americans. You have supported that cause, too, but at the moment, you have not made it clear that this important provision will be included in the original immigration legislation. Not including LGBT protections in the original draft of the bill sends the wrong message and risks that those critical protections will not be included. It also sends the dangerous message that it is acceptable to continue to discriminate against certain groups of people and would be incredibly damaging to those who support LGBT rights and immigration reform. The dignity of LGBT people, who we love and value, must not be traded behind the closed doors of legislative negotiations. They deserve a vigorous, public, and moral advocate in their U.S. Senator. As the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote from Birmingham Jail, “an injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” We, the undersigned leaders in New York’s faith community, urge you to publicly endorse the inclusion of LGBT protections in the immigration bill and to include the principles of LGBT equality represented in the Uniting American Families Act in the first draft you are generating with your Senate colleagues. This moment in history is an opportunity to cement your legacy as a champion for the civil rights of all Americans. This is God’s work. Please don’t let us, or our LGBT brothers and sisters, down. Sincerely, The Undersigned This campaign is a partnership of Bend the Arc: Jewish Action, Empire State Pride Agenda, Auburn Seminary, and Groundswell.
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    Created by David Elcott, PhD
  • President Obama: Ensure Health Equity for Immigrants
    Every year, millions of Americans are locked out of our country’s health care system because of federal policies that prohibit some immigrants, including legal permanent residents, from obtaining health benefits. These are bad policies that cost lives and money. They are policies that were not remedied during health care reform. They should be addressed now, as the country moves forward to fix the broken immigration system.
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  • Stop Department of Homeland Security Retaliation Against Immigrant Activists!
    In 2019, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals recognized that the First Amendment prohibits the government from targeting immigration activists for deportation based on their political speech.  To allow ICE to deport activists like Ravi on the basis of their advocacy would have a chilling effect on public speech by other activists, immigrants and US citizens alike.  Ravi's case (more information can be found here - https://theintercept.com/document/2019/04/26/2nd-circuit-court-rules-in-favor-of-ravi-ragbir/) is but one of many examples of government retaliation. As long as ICE, DHS, and other government agencies are able to avoid consequences for violating constitutional rights and norms of basic human decency, they will continue to act with impunity to stamp out dissent. We must step up and act NOW in order to protect our leaders in the fight for justice as well as to safeguard our fundamental right to free speech.
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  • Help Free Our Daddy!!!
    Save my family.
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    Created by Jennifer Kottke
  • You Can Stop Frank Barker From Being Deported
    You can stop Frank Barker from being deported. Who is Frank Barker? A father. A grandfather. An uncle, a sibling, a son. A healthcare worker, with degrees in psychology and sociology. A recovering addict, clean for seven years. A volunteer. A formerly incarcerated man putting his life back together. Twice-promoted to manager of Housing at Aligned Services of NYC, ASCNYC. An HIV-positive survivor. A vital part of his community. Frank Barker is many things, but to the Obama administration, he is only a number: one of the eleven million people living in fear of our unjust deportation system. And if we don’t act now, Frank may very well join the over 1000 people deported from their loved ones every single day. Can you help Frank and his family breathe free? Frank needs a temporary stay of removal to delay his deportation. Here’s how you can help: •Write a letter of support using the template below and send it to The New Sanctuary Coalition of NYC; •Sign the petition below; and •Share this request far and wide to help keep Frank with his family. Forty years ago, Frank was brought to the U.S. from the Caribbean at age nine (born in Nevis). Since his arrival, he earned two degrees and has worked in healthcare since 1986, raising a beautiful family: his daughters Kristan and Myah. His grandsons, J’cion and Ja’kei, parents, siblings, and numerous nieces and nephews—all are U.S. citizens; count on Frank for financial, emotional, and spiritual support. Along the way, he’s made mistakes—substance dependence that led to several convictions. He served his time, got clean and is now a better man for it. To make amends and give back to our community, he began volunteering for Aligned Services Centers of NYC (ASCNYC), an organization that cares for sick people without homes. Through his passion and hard work, he was hired, and has since been promoted twice and is now their Housing Placement Manager. In spite of these contributions to our community, ICE locked Frank up for 12 months, only releasing him because they did not want to pay for his health care. Frank is sick—he takes 15 pills a day—and needs to be closely monitored by his doctors to stay alive. A deportation now could very well be a death sentence. It doesn’t have to be. We can keep Frank here, at his job and with his loved ones. Please take action today: write a letter, sign the petition, and share Frank’s story with your friends. Help Frank Barker and his family breathe free.
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  • Stop the Deportation of Rickley Lionel
    Rickley is a 24 year old, hardworking young man who has been living in the United States since he was 11 years old. Rickley and his brother Voidette came to the United States to join his mother. Rickley attended high school and has been working in construction since. Voidette, Rickley’s brother, has a disability that limits his opportunity to independently go out and he requires extensive care. Rickley has always been a father figure to Voidette and has been helping his mother with taking care of Voidette. Rickley has two daughters, Emily and Allysi, of 7 and 4 years old who both have American citizenship. Rickley worked in construction in order to help support his family. Rickley has been held in detention since November 2012, and he has only seen Alyssi on one occasion. In June 2013, Rickley was transferred to Alabama and his family has not been able to visit him. Rickley’s father has never been involved in his childhood and Rickley grew up in an environment where domestic violence was not uncommon. Rickley was arrested because he had drugs on him, but the plea agreement which he took also included the sale of drugs. This is not true. However, as a result of his arrest, ICE began a deportation case against Rickley, even though that would mean that Rickley would be separated from his family. Rickley has taken ownership for his past mistakes and is determined to overcome his past struggles by focusing on the future. Rickley has been baptized last August, regularly attends bible classes, and encourages other detainees to get involved as well. The Obama administration has directed local ICE officers to exercise discretion. However, ICE has failed to exercise discretion for Rickley and they are continuing to advocate for his deportation. Additionally, last summer the Obama administration announced a program to defer the deportation of persons who arrived in the United States as children. Rickley and his family desperately want him to remain in the United States, the only country that he considers home. Please sign this petition asking ICE to follow their own directives and not deport Rickley.
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    Created by Sarah de Mol