Standing in solidarity for immigration reform

By Pedro Morillas, Immigration Campaign Manager

In order to draw attention to the moral imperative for immigration reform, a group of dedicated activists has set up camp at the foot of the Capitol, and is showing Congress just how badly Americans want reform to happen. Participants in the Fast for Families have been going without food since November 12th, using a tent set up on the National Mall as their home base for the 24-hour, 7-day-a-week action.

Their activities on the ground have sparked solidarity across the country, and prompted visits from leaders as diverse as Vice President Joe Biden, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Republican Congressman Jeff Denham, and Cecilia Muñoz, director of the Domestic Policy Council.

Along with the high-profile visitors, a group of OFA volunteers visited the fasters this weekend. It was a moving experience for the volunteers, and even though the fasters hadn’t eaten in five days, they met with the OFA volunteers and shared their stories — but mostly they talked about the others who have visited, how much the visits mean, and how they help keep them going.

When speaking about immigration reform today, President Obama himself added his voice in support:

Right now, I’m seeing brave advocates who have been fasting for two weeks in the shadow of the Capitol, sacrificing themselves in an effort to get Congress to act. And I want to say to Eliseo Medina, my friend from SEIU, and the other fasters who are there as we speak, I want them to know we hear you. We’re with you. The whole country hears you.

Immigration reform will be good for the economy, it is supported by a clear majority of Americans, and morally it is the right thing to do. The strength and bravery of the individuals on the National Mall right now stands in stark contrast to the stalling and foot dragging in the House of Representatives.

Originally published at