Melissa Bowe, Program & Advocacy Manager for NJFON, shares ways you stay active and informed on refugee and immigration issues.
Combatting Local Anti- Refugee Legislation
In recent months there has been both an outpouring of local support for refugees as well as restrictive action directed at refugees at the state level. Thirty-one Governors across the country have called for restrictions on refugee arrivals and numerous states have introduced detrimental legislation, with new copy-cat legislation cropping up on practically a daily basis.
Refugee Council USA (RCUSA) members are tracking these developments across the country and working with local allies to change the conversation on refugee resettlement. Sign up for their state refugee action alerts to stay informed on where your state stands on this issue.
Since January, the Department of Homeland Security has been conducting raids to deport Central American children and adults who entered the United States seeking asylum. Reports are showing that the raids both terrorize and destabilize families, and often actively violate the rights of those affected (see United We Dream’s report based on their raids hotline). In February, NJFON attended an action in front of the White House organized by the Fair Immigration Reform Movement and the Center for Community Change. Check out our Facebook page for videos and photos from that action.
Legal Support for Executive Action
We have incredibly exciting news to share. As many of you know, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the appeal of the Texas district court’s order stopping DAPA/DACA+ in its tracks. “Understanding the Legal Challenges to Executive Action” is a great tool to understand more about the upcoming Supreme Court case.
We, alongside advocates across the country, believe it’s a good thing that the DAPA/DACA+ reforms would allow millions of immigrants to remain in the U.S. and obtain work authorization. Thus, in connection with the Supreme Court’s review of this case, NJFON, through JFON-Nebraska attorney Shane Ellison, is authoring an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief to offer our collective support of the DAPA/DACA+ reforms. It looks like all JFONs will be signing on!
Submitting this amicus brief is an exciting opportunity for the entire network to show their support for a case that is central to our work of helping vulnerable immigrants come out of the shadows, work lawfully, and be with their family here.
Thank you for the work that you do and feel free to reach out with other local advocacy updates, questions or concerns!