Just in case I wasn’t feeling depressed and overwhelmed enough this AM, I decided to procrastinate getting some work done by surfing thorough some favorite blogs and other websites. Thanks to the folks at http://www.seeingblack.com I learned the following:
“FBI Statistics Show Anti-Latino Hate Crimes on the Rise
New FBI statistics suggest anti-Latino hate crimes have risen by almost 35 percent since 2003. In California—the state with the largest number of Latinos—the number of hate crimes against Latinos have almost doubled. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the violence engulfing Latinos is part of a backlash over the immigration debate in this country.”
Yes, fear and ignorance breed stupidity, anger and scapegoating.
Is it any wonder that the anti-immigrant rhetoric has fueled violence and racism? One only need to look at how the conversation is framed. The term “illegal alien “is in and of itself a justification for violence and vigilantism.
News like this can overwhelm us, or be a call to action.
So, be sad…
and then be active.
The good news is there are lots of groups doing good work to make a change. Here are just a few:
AFL-CIO www.alfcio.org/home (Opposes guest worker programs that deny equal rights. Actively and openly organizes both documented & undocumented immigrants.)
American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee www.adc.org (Provides legal advice and action alerts for immigrant rights, concerned with U.S. stereotypes of Arabs and the effects on immigrants’ First Amendment rights.)
American Civil Liberties Union—Immigrants’ Rights Freedom Network www.aclu.org (Supports immigrants through advocacy, education and litigation.)
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org (A Quaker organization -Local offices house a variety of programs dealing with immigrant rights.)
Center for Human Rights & Constitutional Law www.centerforhumanrights.org (A nonprofit, public interest legal foundation dedicated to furthering and protecting the civil, constitutional, and human rights of immigrants, refugees, indigenous peoples, children, and the poor.)
Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. www.acliniclegal.org (Provides legal and nonlegal support though its legal immigration program.)
Equal Rights Advocates www.equalrights.org (A feminist organization that specializes in legal and advocacy work.)Farmworker Justice Fund http://www.fwjustice.org (legislative, advocacy and legal work to protect the rights of seasonal and migrant farmworkers)
The Farm Labor Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO http://www.floc.com (Both a social movement and a labor union. The FLOC vision emphasizes human rights as the standard and self-determination as the process for achieving these rights.)
Immigrant Legal Resource Center www.ilrc.org (consultation, training workshops and seminars, and educational curricula on immigration issues to pro-bono attorneys and nonprofit agencies serving immigrants)
Immigrants Support Network www.isn.org (Represents foreign workers, primarily on high-tech (H1-B) visas, attempting to gain permanent residency through their employment.)
Institute for Policy Studies www.ips-dc.org Multi-issue progressive policy think tank. Sponsors the Campaign for Migrant Domestic Worker Rights—a coalition supporting domestic workers employed under special service worker visas. )
International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission www.iglhrc.org (Manages an Asylum Program that provides documentation and legal support services to asylum seekers and their advocates.)
Lawyers Committee for Human Rights www.lchr.org/home.htm (International network that protects the rights of workers and asylum seekers in the United States and abroad.)
Lesbian and Gay Immigration Rights Taskforce www.lgirtf.org (Supports gay, lesbian, bisexual asylum seekers, binational same-sex couples, and immigrants with HIV.)
Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service www.lirs.org (Has programs in resettling unaccompanied refugee children and advocating for the rights of detained asylum seekers.)
Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund www.maldef.org (Seeks to foster sound public policies, laws and programs to safeguard the civil rights of Latinos.)
National Asian Pacific American Legal Consortium www.napalc.org (Works to advance the legal and civil rights of Asian Pacific Americans through litigation, public education and public policy.)
The National Association for Bilingual Education www.nabe.org/index.html (Devoted to representing the interests of language-minority students and bilingual education professionals.)
National Center for Farmworker Health www.ncfh.org (Dedicated to improving the health of the farmworkers.)
National Center for Human Rights Education www.nchre.org (Advocates for the effectiveness of using a human rights model for social, racial and economic justice.)
National Coalition for Dignity and Amnesty of Undocumented Immigrants www.tepeyac.org/amnistia. (A coalition of 300 organizations from 25 states working for legalization of undocumented immigrants.)
The National Farm Worker Ministry www.nfwm.org (A church-based movement to support farmworkers as they organize to achieve equality, freedom, and justice. Operates one of the only emergency assistance programs for migrants who have lost jobs and living spaces due to natural disasters. )
National Immigration Forum www.immigrationforum.org (Provides information to policy makers, media and the public about the benefits of immigration and multiculturalism.)
National Immigration Law Center www.nilc.org (Serves low-income immigrants and their families through impact litigation, advocacy, technical assistance, coalition building, and community support.)
National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild www.nlg.org/nip Seeks to ensure political, social and economic equality for immigrants.)
National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights www.nnirr.org (Envisions and promotes a broader notion of social justice based on racial equality, economic justice, and human rights).
Service Employees International Union www.seiu.org/body.html (Representing many immigrants, among others with campaigns defending the labor rights of janitors, nursing home workers, and hospital workers.)
Sweatshop Watch www.sweatshopwatch.org (Seeking to eliminate sweatshop conditions in the global garment industry. Advocates for a living wage along with safe and decent working conditions. )
Unite Union! www.uniteunion.org (Supports legalization of all undocumented workers Opposes immigrant welfare restrictions, criminal deportation laws and employer sanctions.)
United Farm Workers www.ufw.org (Supports the legalization of all undocumented immigrants and petitions for the rights of all farmworkers, regardless of citizenship status.)