JCIRA is very pleased to be a partner in the Give Jefferson campaign. You can support JCIRA and other organizations by donating now to Give Jefferson.
For 65 years, donors in Jefferson County have provided for the basic human needs of vulnerable individuals and families by giving to the United Good Neighbors’ Give Jefferson campaign. Supported by donors like you, United Good Neighbors champions local nonprofit organizations that mitigate the extraordinary impacts of poverty and unexpected hardships with empathy and compassion.
Your donation ensures that critical safety-net services can deliver:
For more information, see the "Good Works" section of the Port Townsend Leader for November 17, 2021.
You can also give directly to JCIRA: Click here
or send a check to:
JCIRA P.O. Box 647
Port Townsend, WA 98368
On October 31, a group of JCIRA members from Jefferson and Clallam counties attended the 7th annual Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) commemoration at the Northwest Detention Center (NWDC) in Tacoma. The event was organized by La Resistencia, the local organization that supports those detained at the center and that works to end detainment and deportation.
Intended to honor those who have lost their lives as a result of the inhumane treatment of the U.S. immigration system, the day was marked by both remembrance and resistance. Lilting music gave way to a series of speakers, including Maru Mora Villalpando and Wendy Pantoja Castillo of La Resistencia and Justmaine Maitre from the Haitian community and a student representative, Caroline Andrade.
Maru noted the recent win in federal court in the lawsuit filed by detainees and Attorney General Ferguson. The jury held that GEO, the private prison operator of the NWDC (now also called the ICE Processing Center), was breaking the law with its slave-labor “wages” of $1 per day for detainees that do the daily cleaning and maintenance work of the facility. As a result, GEO was told to pay the state minimum wage, not only to current detainees, but retroactively to all who have worked there. The jury award was $17 million. However, as Maru explained, “We know GEO will appeal, and if the suit reaches the Supreme Court, we do not expect to win.” In any case, she continued, “Our goal is not the money. Our goal is to shut the Detention Center down.” She then led chants of “Shut it down! Now!”
Wendy then shifted to a reflective tone, honoring those who have died in a ceremony incorporating a traditional Dia de Los Muertos marigold-petal path to lead the spirits of the lost. The event ended with the distribution of candles throughout the crowd, which were then lit. Every person was invited to name a person close to them who has passed away, and in the moment, all present were united in remembrance and hope.
Shut down the NWDC!
JCIRA invites you to take part in the 7th annual Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) commemmoration at the Northwest Detention Center (NWDC) in Tacoma to honor those who have died as a result of the inhumane U.S. immigration system.
We will join once again with Maru Mora Villalpando, La Resistencia, and members of the Seattle Haitian community to show our support at this important event.
Mark your calendar:
Sunday, October 31, 2021
For more details or to arrange rides, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
SHUT DOWN THE NWDC!
,You won’t want to miss JCIRA’s October 21 general meeting. Although our previously scheduled speaker had to cancel, we’re pleased to announce that Maru Mora Villalpando will be our featured guest. An important and compelling speaker, Maru is an immigrant from Mexico City who has spent the last 25 years defending immigrants and leading in the struggle against ICE. She is a cofounder of La Resistencia, an organization that is fighting to end detentions and deportations and to shut down the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma.
As a former undocumented immigrant herself, Maru understands the issues faced by many in the immigrant community. She will speak and answer questions for an hour, responding in Spanish or English. Afterwards, we will hold a discussion about how JCIRA, as a local/regional organization, can engage with some of the larger issues that she raises, which we hear about daily in the news.
Join us on Thursday. This discussion can help define future directions for JCIRA, so don’t miss out!
Thursday, Oct. 21, 5 PM – JCIRA meeting via Zoom
To join the meeting, click on:
Or call 1-253-215-8782
Meeting ID: 886 9297 7955
Tens of thousands of Afghan families who have been admitted to the U.S. on a humanitarian basis are not legally classified as refugees. That means they will likely be ineligible to receive many public benefits, such as food stamps and cash assistance — unless Congress changes the law.
Here’s a summary of the types of immigration pathways available with the benefits of each:
You can help. Sign these petitions and send a message:
Donate to help Afghan refugee resettlement and stay informed:
Also, remember those in Afghanistan at this critical time:
In an article in The New York Times, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres said that one million children are at risk of starvation and death. This article lists additional organizations that provide aid within the country as well as for refugees.
Add your voice and donate today.
The situation in Afghanistan is truly tragic. Thousands of Afghanis worked with or for US military forces and other American agencies. All these persons are marked for death in retaliation by the Taliban. Moreover, if the new regime resumes the policies and practices followed prior to the 2001 invasion by the US, there will be no freedom of speech or expression, women will lose all rights, girls will be denied the opportunity of an education, and everyone will be forced to live under the strict form of Sharia practiced by the Taliban. Such a life is inconceivable for us and for many, perhaps most, Afghanis. We have seen videos showing that people are so desperate to escape that they try to cling to an airplane as it takes off.
The Taliban has promised to reform past practices. However, according to news reports and interviews with people on the ground in Afghanistan and in positions of power in Washington, DC, there have been numerous cases for which the Taliban have denied access to the Kabul airport. There have also been incidents of harassment of Afghani citizens, as well as western press and business people. They have not lived up to their promises. Actually, the word harassment is too weak – because there have been gunshots, beatings, and other violence with some fatalities of citizens. One female reporter said that she had been ordered to cover her face.
JCIRA agrees with the many organizations that insist our government must evacuate and protect as many persons as possible, especially everyone whose life is endangered due to their service for us. No immigration law or policy or procedure should stand in the way of rescuing these persons or resettling them in the country of their choice. And life in the US should be a choice available to all those forced to flee because of their service to our country.
Here's how you can help:
Demand action for Afghan refugees and allies -
email or tweet to the Biden Administration!
Volunteer and Donate:
Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service
International Rescue Committee
Sorry for the late notice, but with the rapid rise of Covid-19 cases in Jefferson County, the celebration and fundraiser at Finn River Cidery has been put on hold. This was a mutual decision by JCIRA and Finn River, who have been a great support to our efforts.
We'll let you know when we have a new date.
Recent Court Ruling Partially Ends DACA
Take action now to support the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, partially ended by a Texas federal judge. Please sign the petition below — today — and contact our elected representatives in Congress.
Texas Federal Judge Hanen called DACA “unlawful” and ended applications to the program. Although the ruling does not end protection for existing DACA participants, “the Dreamers,” it is a serious setback.
We need to speak up to protect Dreamers – and to ensure that DACA recipients, TPS holders, farmworkers, and essential workers have a pathway to citizenship. The best way to make that happen is to include that provision in the reconciliation package expected to be voted on before the August recess.
Take action today!
#1. CLICK HERE TO SIGN UNITED WE DREAM'S PETITION
TO THE BIDEN-HARRIS ADMINISTRATION.
#2. SEND EMAILS TO OUR SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVE:
Senator Patty Murray
Email form: https://www.murray.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/mobile/contactme
Senator Maria Cantwell
Email form: https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact/email/form
Representative Derek Kilmer
Email form: https://kilmer.house.gov/contact/email-me
For More Information About the Ruling from the Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN):
Watch Northwest Immigrants Rights Project’s Facebook Live.
What if I have DACA now?
You are still protected. If you’ve submitted your renewal, it will continue to move forward.
What if I am eligible and was planning to apply?
The Department of Homeland Security can still accept your application, but it will not be able to process it.
Many people and organizations, including JCIRA, are continuing to fight for a pathway to citizenship for the affected groups. We were here before DACA, and we will be here to support immigrants for as long as it takes.
Keep up with the latest bills on immigration with this handy spreadsheet on pending federal legislation. Stay tuned to find out what you can do to use your voice to support and advance key bills. See the full list.
Is President Biden keeping his campaign promises? On Day One, did he do all the things that he said he would do? The answer is essentially yes. Are there any disappointments? The answer again is yes.
Here’s what Biden did on Day One:
-Reversed Trump’s Executive Order Excluding Undocumented Immigrants from the Census.
-Preserved and fortified Protections for Dreamers. (Requires Congressional action; passed House, now in Senate.)
-Reversed the Muslim Ban.
-Repealed Trump’s Interior Enforcement Executive Order.
-Stopped Border Wall Construction. (However, some work on the wall continues.)
-Deferred Enforced Departure for Liberians Presidential Memorandum.
He also promised to outline an immigration plan on Day One, and he did. His plan is embodied in bills S.348 and H.R. 1177.
However, much remains to do, especially on the issue of deportation. Read this excellent in-depth article by Board Member Larry Jensen on where things stand now. It's definitely worth checking out.
Donate to JCIRA!
We are an immigrant rights advocacy non-profit in the North Olympic Peninsula of Washington State