Voters in Arizona have the opportunity with Proposition 308 to overturn a law that prevents Dreamers access to in-state tuition at Arizona universities. Rabbi John A. Linder, a clergy leader with Valley Interfaith Project makes the case for in-state tuition for Arizona Dreamers.
Prop. 308 would finally let Dreamers — hard-working undocumented young people brought to Arizona from other countries as infants or children through no choice of their own — pay the same in-state tuition rates at Arizona public colleges and universities as their high school peers.
Right now, some 2,000 Dreamers have to pay up to three times as much as their peers. That’s not smart and it’s not right..…
Again, these are OUR kids — Arizona kids. It’s simply not fair that they’ve gone to school all their lives alongside other Arizona kids, under the illusion of fairness, only to find that they’re shut out of an affordable higher education merely because they came here undocumented as children. They had no say in the matter! And yet despite that shaky footing, they’ve proven to be among our state’s finest scholars — and hardest workers.
[Photo courtesy of Rabbi John Linder]
Building upon a three-year conversation campaign, Albuquerque Interfaith burst back onto the political scene with a clear cut strategy for the 2019 biennial New Mexico Legislative Session.
Through house meetings, civic academies, research actions and nonpartisan accountability assemblies, Albuquerque Interfaith leaders developed a legislative agenda to address four areas of concern: 1) Neighborhood Preservation, Community Safety and the Criminal Justice System; 2) Strengthening Schools and Public Education for All; 3) Immigrant Justice, Worker Protection and Workforce Development; and 4) Rebuilding our Behavioral Health System and Health Security for All.
Acting in teams, Albuquerque Interfaith leaders plan to track relevant legislation, gather political intelligence, testify, and advocate for their legislative agenda through collaboration with key legislators supporting bills that intersect with the ABQ Interfaith agenda. Sunday handoffs between institutional teams are already happening to ensure no political intelligence is lost.
Through public action in the Legislative Session, Albuquerque Interfaith leaders hope to restore the foundation of public investments in children and fulfill their vision of creating an “inclusive, multicultural community where children thrive and there is justice and well-being for all.”
In the face of increased deportations and growing fears of family separation, TMO clergy and Texas Bishops held a joint press conference calling on Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform with a path towards citizenship. Catholic Cardinal Daniel DiNardo stood with United Methodist Bishop Scott Jones, Lutheran Bishop Michael Rinehart, Presbyterian pastor Rev. Lynne Hargrove, Episcopal pastor Rev. Uriel Osnaya, Baptist pastor Rev. John Ogletree and other clergy in a public stand against the deportation and separation of immigrant families.Read more
The group attempted to deliver petitions calling for an end to imprisonment of refugee children.Read more
At a press conference convened by Valley Interfaith Project with the Arizona bishops, Catholic Bishop Thomas Olmsted signed a letter to the Arizona congressional delegation for immigration reform, attesting that "the cost of inaction is too high." Bishop Olmsted was joined by Auxiliary Bishop Eduardo Nevares, Rabbi John Linder, ELCA Bishop Steve Talmage, Denise Resnick of DRA Stategic Communications in Phoenix and Barry Broome, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. Broome noted that some companies don't come to Arizona because they think the state does not treat people well.Read more
300 leaders of the Sound Alliance and their allies reached an agreement with King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski to support an ordinance that would change how the County handles ICE "detainer requests". Under current practice, when undocumented immigrants are arrested and taken to the County Jail, ICE often sends requests to the jail to hold them at County expense until ICE can transfer them to a nearby for-profit immigrant detention center. Under the ordinance, the County will stop honoring these requests except when an individual has been convicted of certain violent or serious crimes.
People from a diverse mix of faith, labor, and community organizations at the assembly were excited to have an opportunity to strike a blow against our nation's unjust immigration policy at a local level. King County has a population of over 2 million residents and includes the City of Seattle.Read more
McCain: Backing Immigration Reform Sends Right Message, Arizona Republic
"...lack of neighborhood patrols and 'collaboration' with the US Border Patrol were among issues discussed at a meeting earlier this week between a local grassroots citizens' group and members of the Del Rio Police Department.Read more
"At a meeting at his district office last week, Rep. Lamar Smith said something that surprised members of Communities Organized for Public Service/Metro Alliance, a church-based advocacy group that supports comprehensive immigration reform.Read more