As North Carolinians and as Jews, we are committed to welcoming all who seek the same promise of safety and prosperity that first drew many of our own ancestors to this land.
One of our core guiding principles at CJJ is V’ahavta L’reacha Kamocha (love your neighbor as yourself). Living into this value compels us to advocate for immigrant and refugee justice, because every person, no matter what we look like or where we come from, deserves to live with freedom, safety, and belonging. Here in North Carolina, we work with partners like Siembra NC, El Vínculo Hispano / The Hispanic Liaison, CIMA, and Communidad Colectiva; we also work closely with HIAS, both locally and nationally.
We are proud of our community members who help lead the Refugee Resettlement & Immigrant Justice Initiative at Judea Reform in the Triangle. The Initiative has furnished more than ten homes for newly arriving Afghans and other refugees over the past six years. Additionally, the Initiative partnered with Jewish for Good and furnished the apartment of a single Mom and four kids after they had lost everything in an apartment fire at McDougald Terrace. One nice piece of furniture was donated by an Afghan family that no longer needed it and was glad to be able to help a community member.
Judea Reform has a virtual Tzedakah Box at this link here. Your financial support will allow shoppers and schleppers to purchase groceries and personal hygiene items and deliver them to newly arrived refugees from around the world as they "land" in temporary housing here. These contributions preserve the limited funds allocated to each refugee by the State and allow resettlement agency staff to use their time providing case management rather than shopping for food and supplies.
You can join Judea Reform's Refugee Resettlement and Immigrant Justice Team Meeting on the first Wednesday of each month at 7pm by sending an email to [email protected] to get involved with this local work.
In January, our members in the Triad focused their first ever member meeting on the issues facing residents of the mobile home park on Hiatt Street in Greensboro. Check out the articles here, here and here to read up on the issues facing the neighbor so far this year. And here is a helpful facebook post from Nikki Marín Baena, Creative Director at Siembra NC that puts it all in perspective.
At the meeting, our partners at the American Friends Service Committee of the Carolinas shared video testimony from residents, updates on the latest development on the residents' fight to stay in their homes, how the issues tie in with economic justice, housing and immigrant rights. Every single CJJ leader made a commitment to take at least one - in many cases several - actions in support of Hiatt residents and in solidarity with Siembra NC. Click here to learn more about and donate funds to La Asociación de Vecinos Unidos de Casas Mobiles de Hiatt St.
Here are some actions you can take right now to help build a safer, more livable future for all:
- Call on Congress to ensure that evacuated Afghans have a permanent legal status.
Call your Representative and both Senators to ask them to work for an Afghan Adjustment Act.
- Sen Thom Tillis at (202) 224-6342
- Sen Richard Burr at (202) 224-3154
- Ask your Member of Congress to end the use of Title 42 to deny entry to asylum seekers at the border.
- Ask the Biden Administration to resettle Ukrainians with family in the United States
- Ask the Biden Administration to reverse course on their policies at the U.S. Mexico border
- Tell the Biden Administration to ensure that Afghans seeking to leave their country have a pathway to safety
Many of those in our movement are Jewish people whose ancestors faced conditions disturbingly similar to what we are seeing today at the border and in detention centers around the country. We know from our own history what happens when a government targets, dehumanizes, and strips an entire group of people of their civil and human rights. We will never let anything like the Nazi Holocaust happen again.
- CJJ Community Organizer Brandon Mond and
Roxana Bendezú, Executive Director of Migrant Roots Media,
in a co-authored op-ed published in the Burlington Times
Photograph by Anthony Crider