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Grassroots Advocacy Takes Root in Georgia

As part of our mission to stand with refugees and migrants, LIRS works to empower refugees and LIRS network partners to engage in advocacy on both local and national levels. Our network partner, Lutheran Services of Georgia, recently took part in a fantastic grassroots effort – sponsored in part by the LIRS Local Migrant and Refugee Leadership Academy initiative! Last month, staff from Lutheran Services of Georgia and several refugees from the community participated in the... Read More
at Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Sending Hope Behind Bars

Sending Hope Behind Bars This spring, offer comfort to families in detention   In partnership with Amnesty International and RAICES, LIRS is collecting hand-written cards from activists like you to send to families detained at Berks County Residential Center. As one of the few family detention centers in this country, Berks holds men, women, and children in prison-like conditions while they await immigration trials.  With your help, we can send these families a message of... Read More
at Monday, April 9, 2018

Join Us for this Week of Action

Join Us for this Week of Action Equipping You To Take Action & Create Change Between April 2 and April 6, LIRS is mobilizing our network of supporters to hold national leaders accountable for resettling at least 45,000 refugees in FY18 and secure a commitment from the administration to resettle at least 75,000 refugees in the year to come. And we need your help!!   There are three key ways that you can take part in this Week of Action: Advocate in Person :... Read More
at Tuesday, April 3, 2018

A Story of Faith, Hope and Love

A Story of Faith, Hope and Love By Kim The story below was submitted to LIRS by a volunteer for Samaritas, an LIRS local network partner. In the past year, there has been a significant backlog at the  United States Citizenship and Immigration Services  of Special Immigrant Juvenile Status cases for  undocumented children. This backlog has increased the risk that unaccompanied children will age out of foster care and not get the support they... Read More
at Friday, March 23, 2018

Take action to support Iranian refugees seeking to reunite with family in Texas

Take action Support Iranian refugees seeking to reunite with family in Texas Your support is needed to help a group of Iranian refugees and their families in Texas. The refugees were expected to be reunited with their families in San Antonio but are now stuck in Vienna and face imminent deportation back to Iran. The refugees are part of a persecuted religious minority in Iran who were in the process of being resettled in the United States through a policy called the Lautenberg... Read More
at Wednesday, February 28, 2018

A Breakdown of Immigration Legislation: Equip Yourself and Take Action

A Breakdown of Immigration Legislation: Equip Yourself and Take Action Only two weeks remain until the March 5 deadline, when the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA) officially ends. Dreamers are already being deported, and every day we get closer to the March 5 th deadline, more immigrant youth who worship in our churches, attend our schools, and work alongside us, are at risk of deportation. Over the last few months, both the White House and Congress have... Read More
Posted by Rebecca Heller at Friday, February 16, 2018

Bringing the Immigration Debate to Your Social Media Feed for a Week of Vital Advocacy

the Immigration Debate  Follow LIRS on Twitter for a Week of Vital Advocacy Yesterday evening, the Senate began debating a bare-bones immigration bill. We anticipate that the Senate will put a bill on the floor and hold an open amendment process. This means that we may see  amendments that will restrict immigration to historic lows, eliminate the diversity and family visas, take away protections for unaccompanied children, create obstacles for asylum seekers, and increase... Read More
at Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Behind the Scenes, Senators Quietly Fight for Refugee Rights

A lot of LIRS advocacy work happens behind the scenes in DC, and, likewise, a lot of important congressional campaigns take place without much fanfare. January 27 th marked one year since President Trump issued the first executive order banning refugees and Muslims from seeking safety within our borders. At the grassroots level, we organized rallies, call-in days, and meetings; but behind closed doors, representatives on Capitol Hill were also doing their part to support refugees. During... Read More
at Friday, February 9, 2018

Let’s Celebrate our Culture of Welcome by Defending DACA

Defending our calling to welcome the stranger here in the United States is not always easy. Several months ago, the Administration announced plans to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. For years, the program has shielded many young immigrants, who came to this nation at the average age of six, from the unshakeable worry of deportation and separation from their families, friends, and the only country they have ever known. In Michigan, there are approximately 5,400... Read More
at Thursday, February 1, 2018

Calling All Refugee Advocates! Join Us For A National Week of Action

Join Us For A National Week Of Action Coming Up! January 27 - February 3, 2018 As a co-founding member of the We Are All America coalition , LIRS invites you to join us for an important week of action – Jan. 27 through Feb. 3. January 27 marks the one-year anniversary of President Trump's original travel ban. We are seizing this opportunity to stand up as Americans and challenge the Administration to uphold this country's rich legacy of liberty, diversity, and... Read More
Posted by Danielle Bernard at Thursday, January 25, 2018

Our Morals Will Not Be Compromised: Child Protections on the Table in Immigration Debate

Our Morals Will Not Be Compromised Child Protections on the Table in Immigration Debate With the shutdown behind us, Congress is now actively working on an immigration deal, and LIRS is watching carefully as talks turn to the rollback of vital protections for children seeking asylum in the United States. We are hopeful that members from both sides of the aisle will find a way to work together. However, LIRS is unwilling to stand by as the future of vulnerable children is leveraged or... Read More
Posted by Danielle Bernard at Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Faith, Welcome, and the New Sanctuary Movement

We’re glad to welcome Pastor Marsh Drege to the  Redefining Welcome  blog this week as a guest writer. Pastor Drege is the Executive Director of  Seafarers International House  in New York City. Pastor Marsh Drege (center) with two asylees who currently stay at Seafarers International House. Seafarers International House (SIH) has stood with vulnerable immigrants and seafarers–new arrivals to this country–for 145 years. This Lutheran... Read More
at Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Refugee Sunday: How will you celebrate?

The filled and collected backpacks ready to be blessed and given to families released from detention centers. Credit: Ronald Richter For several years, we at LIRS have encouraged supporters to choose a Sunday to focus on refugees. Many churches and groups have faithfully participated and have used their Refugee Sunday service to learn about the global refugee situation, pray for people forced to flee from home, and celebrate refugee neighbors. Today, we... Read More
at Thursday, May 11, 2017

One Woman Who Dreamed of a Better Future

From the left, Shelly Pitterman, former UNHCR Regional Representative, Samba Halkose, and Abdalhamid Ali. Today, we honor the millions of migrant and refugee women around the world. We want to share the story of one woman who sought a better life for herself and her children. Samba was a single mother in the Democratic Republic of Congo where she was disrespected and called a prostitute. The stigma and discrimination made life difficult for her and she longed for a better... Read More
at Wednesday, March 8, 2017