Call to Action
Here are the actions ICOM members should take this month to stand publicly with our immigrant neighbors. Those interested in planning future vigils and other solidarity actions are invited to attend our next monthly meeting at 6:30 pm on Thursday, January 18 at the Twin Cities Friends Meeting House at 1725 Grand Ave in Saint Paul. ICOM meets at this time and location on the third Thursday of every month and holds our vigils at the Whipple Courthouse at 7:30 am on the second Tuesday of every month.
1) Every day that Congress fails to pass a Clean Dream Act, 122 immigrants lose their DACA protection and become exposed to the deportation system. In Minnesota, 6,000 DACA young people are at risk and nationally, 800,000 will eventually be at risk.
Contact all your members of the Minnesota congressional delegation and ask them to support passage of a “Clean” Dream Act, whose passage isn’t tied to border wall funding or other immigrant-targeting measures. Immigrants should not be used as bargaining chips for harmful immigration enforcement, and they cannot afford to wait one more day. Several DACA students have already been deported.
In Minnesota, Jason Lewis (R, 2nd district) and Tom Emmer (R, 6th district) remain the only members of the Minnesota congressional delegation that are uncommitted to supporting DACA. Because their inaction on this issue harms people outside their district and in our neighborhoods, we urge you to write and call Representatives Emmer and Lewis also and demand that they support DACA, even if you do not live in their districts.
2) In October, ICE sent out a notice that they intend to open a new immigrant jail in the Twin Cities region. This new jail would house up to 600 immigrants, which would be a doubling of the number of immigrants jailed in Minnesota!
Our second action is to contact Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith and tell them we want federal legislation that prohibits any further expansion of immigrant detention in Minnesota. You can also write letters to the editor and inform everyone you know.
3) In September, one of our partners, the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAC) introduced its “Sanctuary Now!” Platform in Minneapolis City Council. The Platform contains 13 proposals that would strengthen protections for immigrants and resist attacks against them. One of the 13 proposals was already passed in January, an important U-visa ordinance that will strengthen protections for victims of crime and streamline the certification process. One down, 12 more to go!
Our third action is that we want all Minneapolis residents to call and meet with your City Council member and urge them to pass the Sanctuary Now! Platform. Justice for Minneapolis immigrants can’t wait! If you would like to be part of one of the Ward teams working on passage of this platform, send your contact information to Father Daniel Romero (dro…@firstchurchmn.org). You are also invited to join MIRAC at a press conference about the Sanctuary Now! platform immediately prior to the first meeting of the newly elected Minneapolis City Council at 9 am on Friday, June 12 at City Hall (350 S 5th St). Flier with more details attached.
A bonus opportunity: On January 20, the one year inauguration of the current Presidential administration, there will be many resistance marches by pro-immigrant and anti-bigotry groups. One such march, with the theme “No Human Beings Are Illegal,” will start at the Ramsey County Detention Center at 11:30 am on Saturday, January 20 and end with a rally (and hot beverages) at the Indigenous Roots Cultural Center. More details at the facebook event here.