CDT is ready and organized to support an undocumented family as part of the Newton Sanctuary Collaborative, which may happen soon – stay tuned! If you have already signed up to volunteer, you will hear from us as soon as we have a family in sanctuary. If not, you can sign up in the members section of the CDT website (signups). Friends of CDT members can contact volunteer coordinator Sandy Goodman (sandragon4 [at] gmail.com) to get on the list. If you have not been to a volunteer training, please let Sandy know so that she can let you know when one is being held. Once the Newton Sanctuary has a family, we’ll keep CDT members posted as opportunities to volunteer arise.
Meanwhile, there are many opportunities to support immigrants that do not necessarily require a sustained or time-intensive commitment. These include:
Please reach out to any of us if you have questions or concerns.
Wishing justice for immigrants in 2018,
Stacey Chacker, chacsjc [at] gmail.com
Sandy Goodman, sandragon4 [at] gmail.com
Danielle Klainberg, danielleklainberg [at] gmail.com
Bonnie Tenneriello, bonniet4 [at] gmail.com
Major immigrants’ rights groups, communities of faith (including the Newton sanctuary cluster), and others have joined in the Boston Cluster Network to offer support to undocumented people, from accompanying them to court appointments to helping with transportation to showing up at vigils and rallies. You can sign up to be part of this effort, indicating what type of support you are available to provide, at this link. (Please indicate that you are a CDT and/or Newton cluster member). Contact Bonnie if you have trouble signing up: bonniet4 [at] gmail.com.
If you happen to be an attorney with an interest in taking on an immigration case, but without expertise in immigration law, CDT member Bob Warren, an immigration attorney, has offered to provide mentorship on immigration cases. You can indicate your interest when you sign up for the Boston Cluster (see above) and contact Bob, rmwarren53 [at] gmail.com. Bob is also looking for therapists to do evaluations of immigration clients.
We can support policy changes that will improve things for all immigrants. Currently, our focus is helping to get the Safe Communities’ Act passed in the Massachusetts legislature. The Safe Communities Act would protect the civil rights, safety and well-being of all residents by drawing a clear line between immigration enforcement and public safety. Sponsored by State Sen. Jamie Eldridge (S.1305) and State Rep. Juana Matías (H.3269), it ensures that our tax dollars are not used to help the Trump administration deport immigrant families or create a Muslim registry.
Immediate ways to help:
- Click here to email your legislators and the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition’s (MIRA) campaign.
- Join MIRA’s text alert. Text to 52886, and put in SAFEMA. You will get a link asking for more information. You will then get action alerts tailored to you when specific action is needed with your legislators.
Future steps will include (when notified by MIRA re: timing)
- A push to get CDT members to call their MA legislators.
- Op-Eds or Letters to the Editor.
- If you are interested in helping to make calls to CDT members and/or writing a Letter to the Editor, please email Stacey Chacker at chacsjc [at] gmail.com.
Finally, save April 4, 2018 for MIRA’s Lobby Day at the State House.
Although we discussed the possibility of working on refugee issues at our October meeting, we have decided to focus our group’s efforts on undocumented immigrants, given the urgency of the crisis. However, folks who wish to support refugee efforts can get involved with the International Institute of New England by signing up for a volunteer orientation on the IINE website, https://iine.org/events/; by emailing the IINE’s Director of Partner engagement, Cheryl Hamilton, chamilton [at] iine.org; or joining the Needham Immigration Task Force in its refugee resettlement efforts, by contacting Jessica Day, jessicaday257 [at] yahoo.com.