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It is easy to feel helpless in the face of the Trump administration's accelerating crackdown on undocumented immigrants living in the United States and crossing the southern border. As Reform Jews, we know that inaction is not an option. As with much activism, you can have the most impact by acting in your local community -- a theme that comes across in many of these suggestions for how to take action. Here are five ways you can make a difference in the lives of millions of undocumented immigrants today:
- Volunteer with a border relief agency or organizations responding to deporation raids, such as: Al Otro Lado, Catholic Charities Respite Center, Espacio Migrante, RAICES.
- Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper.
- Sign petitions and write to your congresspeople. One important request is for them to defund hate.
- Join the RAC’s Brit Olam *Immigration Justice* cohort here.
- Join the “Immigrant, Refugee, and Asylum Seeker Justice Brit Olam Cohort” Tent group. In that group you can learn about current events, connect with other congregations active in immigrant justice work, and post about your congregation’s actions so we can all know about the work our movement is doing.
- Support members of the Reform movement who themselves are -- or who have family members who are -- directly-impacted by immigration enforcement and policies.
- Create a social action team and connect with local migrant-rights organizations. In working for immigrant justice, it’s essential to follow the lead of migrant-led organizations, like United We Dream, RAICES, Al Otro Lado, and others. Reach out to local interfaith immigration coalitions to receive training in activities such as accompaniment, rapid response, know your rights trainings, and deportation defense. If you don’t know how to find local partners, you can try contacting national organizations about local chapters: LA RED, a project of Faith in Action, Industrial Areas Foundation, Fair Immigration Reform Movement, United We Dream, American Friends Service Committee.
- Hold a fund drive to support immigration bond and attorneys’ fees
- Provide physical sanctuary in your congregation, either short term or long. Connect with the New Sanctuary Movement.
- Coordinate a protest action around a detention facility with local partners. United We Dream provides guidelines here.
- Deliver a sermon on immigration justice.
- Speak publicly and on social media about refugees, asylum seekers and immigrant rights.
- Bring a moral and faith voice to a vigil for deportation defense or shutting down detention centers
- Do rapid response after raids and speak out powerfully and publicly in coordination with interfaith clergy
- Write an op-ed.