Refugee and immigrant leaders working in the U.S. South presented compelling political education on the realities that immigrants and refugees face in this current historical moment.

Glory Kilanko with Women Watch Afrika and Manzoor Cheema with Project South and Muslims for Social Justice discussed the U.S. economic and military policies that have created the migrant crisis around the world. Suzanne Pharr, of the National Council of Elders, framed the discussion in this country’s history of attempted genocide of indigenous people and the forced migration and enslavement of Africans.

“Not only are immigrants separated by U.S. policies before coming here, but we’re also separated when we’re in the United States,” Glory Kilanko said, sharing examples of refugee resettlement challenges and children aging out of a reunification process that can take years.

“Islamophobia is a product of white supremacy, linked to anti-Black racism and other forms of repression.” – Manzoor Cheema

“If we don’t stand together in the South, we have no chance of change happening anywhere else. It’s time for us to see this work as part of our daily work.” – Colette Pichon Battle, Gulf Coast Center for Law & Policy

TOOLS & ACTION STEPS:Download the Signal App Create a group with your family and/or network to alert someone immediately if needed. The app is encrypted, and settings can ensure messages disappear.
 Print & Share Legal Rights cards Print, copy, cut, and share these wallet-sized cards with your constitutional rights and script for communicating them directly.
 Rapid Response: If you live in Alabama – Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice is signing up volunteers in the Rapid Response initiative as a verifier or accompaniment by signing up here.
 Call Elected Officials: Contact local leaders in your jurisdiction and urge sheriff and police not to participate in raids or cooperate with ICE in sharing information about immigrants at risk. See thissample script for your calls.
 Sanctuary Spaces: Resource & Fact Sheet about how to establish a sanctuary space produced by Project South and the GA Latino Alliance for Human Rights (GLAHR). Listen to the recording and share the resources below.
Resources and Information 
 Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights
Southeast Immigrant Rights Network
Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice
Black Alliance for Just Immigration