Migration and Borders - Online Conversation

photo: Steve Pavey, #HopeInFocus

photo: Steve Pavey, #HopeInFocus

Many have been following closely and actively engaging in support work for the migrant caravan at the US Southern Border, and many of us have been part of immigrant rights struggles for years.

On Wednesday, December 19th, we hosted an online conversation to discuss the current moment in the context of these historical struggles - How did we get here? What is new and different in this moment, and what is a continuation of previous migrations and human rights struggles? What organizing is ongoing, and how can we best support from New York? Video, speaker info, and more resources below.

Rev. Emily Brewer is the Executive Director of the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship (PPF), a 75-year-old anti-war organization committed to active nonviolence to promote justice in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and beyond. Before attending seminary and joining the staff of PPF in 2015, Emily participated in PPF's Accompaniment Program in Colombia and spent a year in Guatemala living and working with indigenous women there as well as working at Conexión Americas in Nashville, TN. She graduated from Union Theological Seminary in 2015 and continues to live in New York City. She recently wrote this reflection on a direct action of faith leaders at the US/Mexico border.

Aly Wane is an undocumented activist originally from Senegal. He has worked with many groups on the issue of immigration over the years including the Black Alliance for Just Immigration, the UndocuBlack Network and the Worker’s Center of Central NY. Right now he is on the Steering Committee of the Syracuse Peace Council. You can read his testimony at the week 2 action of the NYS Poor People’s Campaign here.

The Rev. David F. Telfort is the eighth installed pastor of the Lafayette Ave. Presbyterian Church in Brooklyn, NY. The Brooklyn native received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from Occidental College in Urban Environmental Policy and a Masters of Divinity from Yale University’s School of Divinity. In both places he sensed and wrestled with a call from God to liberation work through community organizing. He brings into every room he enters the voices of his Afro-Caribbean ancestors and leans on their lessons to do the never-ending work of freedom.

Other readings and resources:

A Century of U.S. Intervention Created the Immigration Crisis by Mark Tseng-Putterman

“How U.S. Involvement in Central America Led To a Border Crisis” by Al Jazeera

Our Government is Deliberately Inflicting Suffering on Asylum Seekers by Rev. Ben Perry

Disappeared: How U.S. Border Enforcement Agencies Are Fueling A Missing Persons Crisis

On the Ground Organizations to support:

Sanctuary Caravan
Al Otro Lado
Pueblo Sin Fronteras
Workers’ Center of Central NY
Undocublack Network