Homecoming Call: Love Resists—Protect Our Communities NOW!

By Susan Leslie

As we enter into another congregational year and celebrate at homecoming services, our hearts are also heavy. Over the summer we’ve witnessed white supremacist actions and violence, including the recent Trump campaign rally in Phoenix, the presidential pardon of notorious Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and the administration’s plan to provide local police departments with military-grade equipment.

On September 1st, Texas SB4, the worst racial profiling and anti-sanctuary city bill yet, goes into effect. Thankfully, a federal judge has put a temporary injunction on the bill. Ten state attorneys general are demanding that the Trump administration end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) for “Dreamers’ by September 5th or face legal action. There are now leaks from the White House that Trump may rescind DACA this week ending legal status for close to one million young immigrants who could now face deportation. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for hundreds of thousands of refugees from Africa, the Middle East, Haiti and Central America is also threatened.

Millions of people will be harmed directly by these measures. All of us are harmed by this consolidation of a neo-fascist white supremacist agenda and the scapegoating and de-humanization of our immigrant and black and brown communities.

How can we as Unitarian Universalists adequately respond? We say #LoveResists.

A broad coalition of our immigrant rights and multi-faith partners and many progressive organizations are asking us to respond within 48 hours if DACA is rescinded. We are being asked to:

  1. Mobilize in the streets, at the White House, at Trump-owned properties, and at ICE facilities all around the country to reject this implementation of a white supremacist agenda. (Find buildings associated with Trump.)
  2. Call or show up in person at the district offices of our members of Congress. Tell them they must defend DACA, pass the DREAM Act, and work for a path to citizenship for all undocumented immigrants. The Interfaith Immigration Coalition has set up a national call in day for Thursday, August 31. Use these numbers to connect with your elected officials:
    • Call your representative first at 1-888-496-3502
    • Then call your senators at 1-888-410-0619
    • More information and talking points can be found at the Interfaith Immigration Coalition.
  3. Call the White House at (202) 456-1111 and tell Trump: Young immigrants who have long called this country their home shouldn't be stripped of their legal status. Dreamers are not your bargaining chips to be used to further criminalize and persecute the broader immigrant community.

See Defend DACA for action locations (if an announcement is made), along with other updates, and talking points.

Love Resists all efforts to criminalize, stigmatize, banish, and remove our people, our neighbors, our loved ones. We will protect our communities. If you are not already in touch with local immigrant rights organizations, interfaith coalitions, and your UU State Action Network—now is the time to reach out and get connected to find out what is being planned locally.

Lastly, please consider giving to the UUA-UUSC Hurricane Harvey Recovery Fund. While the border patrol continues to run check points during the disaster in Texas, officials in Harris County and Houston are already on record in their opposition to SB4 and local police enforcement and collaboration with ICE, are offering sanctuary shelter to all.

Upcoming Events

September 1

  • Love Resists is joining a National Day of Action co-sponsored by the UUA to oppose Texas’ anti-immigrant SB4 and Defend DACA and TPS. Tell your local legislators to pass a resolution condemning SB4 and say no to copycat legislation in your state. The ACLU has compiled a list of actions around Texas here. For solidarity actions in your state, contact Hilary Klein at Center for Popular Democracy at hklein@populardemocracy.org.

September 3

  • Love Resists, UUs for Social Justice, and the Social Justice Ministry of All Souls Church are joining DREAM Action to defend DACA and save TPS. Join us in front of the White House any time between 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m. DREAM Action is organized by the National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) and cosponsored by UUSC partners the UndocuBlack Network and the National Domestic Workers Alliance. RSVP or share a message of support. Call the White House at (202) 456-111.

September 5

  • DACA ‘Deadline’ when ten states are demanding that the Trump administration end DACA or they will go to a federal court and when Congress reconvenes. Kick-off for Week of Action TBA. Check Defend DACA for announcements.
  • DACA and TPS recipients will fast from September 5-9 in Washington, DC. These young warriors aim to bring national attention to the attacks against immigrants being waged by the Trump administration in supporting an extreme anti-immigrant agenda at the state and national levels. Check Defend DACA for updates and details

Faith communities across the country are joining echo actions, vigils, and solidarity fasting August 30 - September 5. Sign up today to fast and join a solidarity action in support of DACA and TPS.

Resource: Interfaith Immigration Coalition DACA/TPS Toolkit

About the Author

Susan Leslie

Susan Leslie is retired and was the Congregational Advocacy & Witness Director for the Unitarian Universalist Association. She has worked in the UUA’s national social justice and multicultural staff teams since 1991.

For more information contact .

Icon that says "I will defend immigrants, DACA, and TPS. #heretostay"

Once an announcement about DACA is made, United We Dream and the National Immigration Law Center will co-host two nightly conference calls in English and Spanish to explain what is happening and provide information to help navigate the legal system.

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