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Alabama's new law and the impact on immigrant families

October 4, 2011
Fifty years ago, Alabama found itself at the center of a national battle for justice and civil rights. The bus boycotts, freedom rides and efforts to integrate schools and universities are widely looked upon as watershed moments in the march towards equality. The history books tell us that progress on this front has been significant and sustained. Yet once again, Alabama is a focal point in a controversy over civil and human rights, the outcome of which could have far-reaching implications for families and communities across the country. Judge Sharon Blackburn’s decision not to block...
Emily Butera's picture

Human and Civil Rights Violations in the Name of Immigration Law Enforcement

September 27, 2011
Cross-posted from my blog, MotherTalkers.com . The grave consequences of not protecting the human and civil rights of immigrants, including those without papers, has weighed heavily on my mind lately. Our organization, MomsRising , is part of a delegation of women in Georgia, shedding light on an Arizona SB1070 copycat law. I've also seen a lot of news stories lately on the fallout of such laws: parent-child separation, workplace and home raids, racial profiling, economic consequences due to the stigma such laws bring to a state, and child and spousal abuse -- as victims are afraid to call...
Elisa Batista's picture

If Eleanor Roosevelt were going to Georgia…

September 27, 2011
As part of the We Belong Together delegation, I am going to Georgia to try to channel Eleanor Roosevelt. This is a tall order, but if there is ever a moment when her wisdom, passion and commitment was needed, this is it. A pioneer for human rights in her time, Eleanor was a principal drafter of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the first document to spell out a set of rights that attach to all people. The horrors of the Holocaust had recently shown what can happen when a state assigns rights based on distinctions like race, political opinion, sexuality or nationality. The Universal...

My Story-Our Story

September 27, 2011
As an immigrant, a woman, a social worker and a professor who teaches about the immigrant experience in the United States, I feel very connected to other immigrants throughout this country on many levels. Restrictive immigration policies such as HB 87 in Georgia, HB 497 in Utah, SB1070 in Arizona and HB56 that is about to go into effect in Alabama are oppressive to immigrants and is a reactive response to the complexities of the immigration issues in this country. My mother migrated to the New York when my sister and I were 8 and 10 years old respectively. During the five years we were...

This is not what I was taught the American Dream was.

September 27, 2011
“This is not what I was taught the American Dream was. The American Dream in my eyes is everyone having equal rights…. I just want to let America know that this is not fair, what they’re doing to us is not fair, because my dad was stopped for no reason. I don’t think that wearing landscaper clothes and having brown skin [is] a crime.” This is a quote from Anna, a high school student in Burlington, Washington, whose father ended up in deportation proceedings after an encounter with the police. She told her story along with dozens of other courageous witnesses at a series of hearings that the...

Georgia’s New Anti-Immigrant Law – Writings from the Women’s Delegation Traveling to Atlanta to Expose Human Rights Violations

September 27, 2011
Welcome to the MomsRising blog-a-thon developed by the delegation of women leaders traveling to Georgia this week as part of a growing national resistance to anti-immigrant laws. The We Belong Together Delegation will hear, and then share, the stories of women and children affected by Georgia’s anti-immigrant bill, HB 87, copycat legislation of Arizona’s controversial and costly SB1070. (For more information on HB 87, see below.) The over two dozen organizations represented in the delegation include the National Domestic Workers Alliance , AFL-CIO , Center for Reproductive Rights , MomsRising...
Mary O's picture

My Mother’s Story and Why I’m Going to Georgia

September 27, 2011
This week I’m going to Georgia, and I’m excited and hopeful. I’m honored to be joining several other women from around the country as part of the We Belong Together delegation. We’re tasked with documenting the impact of Georgia’s new anti-immigrant law on children and families. Their suffering is very real, yet their voices are often not heard. When I think of their stories, I’m reminded of my mother. Because of the extreme poverty in her hometown, she was forced to drop out of school at the age of thirteen in order to work and help my widowed grandmother support the family. She vowed that...
Wendy Cervantes's picture

Addressing Georgia’s New and Abusive Anti-Immigrant Law – Why I am joining the “We Belong Together” Delegation

September 27, 2011
For more than two hundred years, mothers from every corner of the globe have come here to seek a better life for their families, particularly their children. And all of us, newcomers as well as those with families who have been here for generations, want our children to live a safe and healthy life, one with the opportunity to fulfill their hopes and dreams. Over the course of our nation’s history, there have been cycles of anti-immigrant fervor including a painfully virulent one right now. The most recent manifestation is Georgia’s passage of a harsh Arizona style anti-immigrant law. This...
Mary O's picture

In Georgia, Thinking of Henry and His Mother

September 27, 2011
“It’s like my mom… doesn’t exist. My mom doesn’t ask too much of her place in society. She just asks to be acknowledged. My greatest fear is my mom being deported.” (Henry, U.S. citizen whose mother is an undocumented immigrant) I thought of Henry --- and his mother --- when I was asked to participate in this week’s “We Belong Together” Georgia campaign. The campaign brings together female leaders from all walks of life to bear witness to the effects on women, children and families targeted by Georgia’s anti-immigration law. In the way only a child can, Henry gives voice to the millions of...

For my mother. For my daughters.

September 27, 2011
Being a new parent is hard. The sleepless nights, the sudden loss of free time, the aching biceps from carrying around a surprisingly heavy baby, the spit up, the bottles, the picking up, the picking up, the picking up. But during my most miserable nights of waking up at 12am, then 2am, then 4am – I think about my mother. I think of her smirking in self-satisfaction now that I’m beginning to get my come-uppance for being such a difficult and rebellious teenager. No, I’m kidding. Sort of. What I really think about is how much more difficult this would all be if I also had to move my life to a...
Miriam Yeung's picture

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