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Dear ISN & IMIrJ leaders and friends in Central Oregon,

How energizing to be together with so many of you a couple of weeks ago for our Fall Quarterly Gathering, and especially to welcome many new leaders to the circle!

For those who were there and for those who wanted to be but couldn't, here is a mini report-back:
  • We used a diagram from Daniel Hunter's book Building a Movement to End The New Jim Crow: An Organizing Guide to talk about the difference between "endless actions" (or endless educational events) and campaigns, which "channel group power by focusing on a concrete goal." From our standpoint as people rooted in faith communities, we considered the role of theological reflection and meaning-making in campaign work. We also talked about how the practices, relationships, stories, and rituals of our diverse traditions can help sustain us and locate our action within a broader vision. 
  • Then, we took a look at one of IMIrJ's current campaigns, ICE Out of Our Courthouses. The campaign aims to: a. ensure our county courthouses are safe and accessible for all residents, regardless of immigration status, and b. make it harder for ICE to detain and deport our immigrant family members, friends, and neighbors. Together we reviewed our working strategy map and campaign timeline.
  • We sketched out a simple 30-60-90 day plan (see below) with concrete actions we can take as leaders and faith communities as part of this campaign. 
As always, it's so encouraging to be in a room of such committed and inspiring leaders. Thank you for all you do and for all the heart you bring to this shared work!

Take care,

Ron, Erika, Shimiko, and Jer
Accompaniment with Martinez-Sosa Family

It was also great to spend time with Jackie and Gabriel (and their kiddos) and hear an update about their asylum process. You can support them directly at their gofundme page here.

If anyone has not yet written a letter of support for them, but you're willing to, now's the time. Below is the format and the suggested information that a letter of support should include.
Letters from friends, family, and employers should be addressed "Dear Immigration Judge."  If they want to include the Portland Immigration Court's address, 1220 SW 3rd Ave Suite 500, Portland, OR 97204, they can.  The letters should explain how they know the family and why they believe they are good people.  The letter should explain what they know about the family's character, involvement in the community/school/church since their arrival. If the letters aren’t in English, we will need to include an English translation and certificate of translation for each letter. Each letter should include the author's identification including a driver’s license, a permanent resident card, or a passport.
Thanks to you who are willing to do this. If you know others who would write a letter, please pass on the information.

ICE Out of Our Courthouses & Communities
a simple 30-60-90 day plan

30 DAYS (September)
  • Continue collecting signatures on our Petition for a Safe & Inclusive Oregon
  • Conduct additional research meetings with local officials to learn more about relationship and communication with ICE (contact to join the team)
  • Mobilize fellow community members to take a group photo as part of statewide effort at courthouses across the state. (Thanks Janet and Emilie for organizing!)
60 DAYS (October)
  • Participate in a strategy call with IMIrJ leaders statewide to assess current opportunities for campaign and next steps. (Details forthcoming.)
  • Monitor plans for the UTCR Committee's hearing of a proposed rule to prohibit ICE arrests in Oregon Courthouses.  
90 DAYS (November)
  • Pull together a team of 4-5 leaders from your congregation who commit to a 90-day (Dec - Feb) effort to educate and engage your faith community for the duration of the Oregon legislature's 2020 short session. (IMIrJ is coordinating with partner orgs. to explore possibilities for legislation to strengthen statewide sanctuary statute and/or prohibit ICE arrests in courthouses.) Ideally, all team members will attend IMIrJ's Winter Quarterly Gathering together in early December (exact date TBD). 

We also discussed the possibility of additional public-facing communications and media opportunities, such as writing Letters to the Editor or opinion pieces for our local newspapers. If this is a place where you can imagine yourself contributing, please reach out to!
Help Steward and Sustain our growing IMIrJ community!

Has your congregation filled out our IMIrJ 2019 Congregational Accompaniment form? Have you considered becoming an individual sustainer of IMIrJ by making an ongoing monthly financial contribution?  Learn more about IMIrJ Stewards and Sustainers here

Interfaith Movement for Immigrant Justice - IMIrJ / (503) 550-3510
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Interfaith Movement for Immigrant Justice · 1704 NE 43rd Ave. · Portland, OR 97213 · USA