Support the local DC organizations fighting family separation
We don’t need to tell you what’s going on at a national level right now, but please allow us to point you towards the organizations that are tackling this national issue on a local level.
In addition to donating to national organizations, check out this vetted list of 14 local organizations (some of them mentioned below) that advocate for and provide services to vulnerable populations in our community. They support our families, friends, and neighbors that are most vulnerable to the actions of a white supremacist administration.
And please, if you’re familiar with other local organizations that we should include in this list, please let us know. This is just the starting point.
Read a bilingual book of comics created by young people from the Latin American Youth Center, telling their own stories of immigration and transformation in the form of graphic memoirs.
Educate yourself on the location of nearby ICE branches and detention centers. The detainment of unaccompanied children has been going on here, too — the Northern Virginia Juvenile Detention Center just ended their contract with the federal government after concerns about it holding unaccompanied migrant children.
There are cases of migrants and refugees being detained after going for routine ICE check-ins. By volunteering to accompany people to check-ins and court hearings, you can show solidarity, help to ease the anxiety of interacting with the legal system, reduce the likelihood of detention with your presence, and keep relatives or lawyers informed in case the person with you is detained. Check-ins occur in ICE field offices in Fairfax and Baltimore, and court appearances are all around then DMV. It’s best if you have availability during working hours on weekdays. volunteer to accompany people and donate.
The Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights Coalition is the only local nonprofit dedicated exclusively to assisting detained immigrants. They provide legal consultation and representation, educational outreach, assistance for asylum-seekers, post-release transition planning, and advocate for the rights of immigrants, including detainees with mental illnesses. Join their listserve to share information, volunteer for a number of duties — including on their detention hotline and jail visits to provide information to detained people — and donate.
Central American Resource Center provides a one-stop shop where Latinx immigrants can access tools and resources they need to thrive, including low- or no-cost legal services and consultations; education around citizenship, voting rights, and civic engagement; housing counseling, and youth programs. Educate yourself with their resources on issues facing DC’s Latinx population, volunteer with their programs, and donate.
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA)
A CASA is a trained and dedicated community volunteer that assists youth in the DC Foster Care system. They litigate, advocate, and help with representation of minors needing legal services. If you want to make a long-term commitment to supporting local children, volunteer. If you want to support others who do, donate.
Legal Aid Justice Center
They offer free legal services to low-income Virginia residents, including direct services and impact litigation on behalf of local immigrant families. Join the Virginia Federal Advocacy Day to End Family Seperation on June 27 and a rally on the Mall June 30, build community support, and donate.
Attend the Families Belong Together DC rally on June 30, organized by a coalition of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, ACLU, and MoveOn. RSVP here.
DSA has been doing some really high-profile local actions highlighting the people who are profiting from detentions/deportations. Want to protest? Start with our Metro DSA chapter. become a member, join a committee, donate, and stay up to date on events and actions so you, too, can heckle a racist out of a local Mexican restaurant.
Many Languages One Voice works to address language isolation though advocacy, education (including “Know Your Rights” training for English Language Learning (ELL) people who deserve the full protections of the DC Language Access Act), and community organizing — including a special program to train immigrant youth to be effective community organizers. They need volunteers who speak Amharic, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, French, Korean, Spanish, and Vietnamese. Volunteer and donate.