Immigration and Sanctuary at Beth Shalom
Congregation Beth Shalom’s Immigration and Sanctuary group has been active since 2017 and works to effectuate the congregation’s sanctuary statement, making clear this congregation’s commitment to supporting immigrants and refugees at risk from discriminatory practices.
Please join our work in one of the following ways:
- Making CBS a more welcoming “Sensitive Location” (all houses of worship are classified by ICE as “Sensitive Locations”);
- Assisting the Jewish Coalition bond fundraiser to support the Fair Fight Immigrant Bond Fund, which will be held on the evening of November 16 from 6:30-9 PM at Bet Alef Meditative Synagogue (https://fairfightbondfund.
- Locating, providing, and supporting host homes for vulnerable youth and adults. Google forms to indicate your interest are available on the website. Host homes with spanish-language ability are particularly in need, and support is always welcome;
- Volunteering at the Seattle World School with newcomer secondary students (age 11-20); and
- Serving as a drop-off point for a food drive to support families broken apart by detention.
We’re doing much more! Find out at our next meeting, October 28 at 7 p.m. Feel free to attend if you are interested in joining the committee or to find out more. You can also visit the website for additional information and links to get involved (https://bethshalomseattle.
Resources from Recent Events:
How to Help Our Immigration & Sanctuary Efforts this Month
Take Action: Call AG Bob Ferguson and thank him and his office for investigating and publicizing the conditions 22 migrant children experienced while held in U.S. detentions centers (See the declaration here). Then call Senator Maria Cantwell (206-220-6400) and Senator Patty Murray (206-553-5545) and ask them to do more, such as investigating, holding hearings, and speaking out publicly to publicize and change the plight of migrant children held in detention in the United States. Here’s an article that discusses the affects of detention and family separation and detention on children.
Take Action: Write a letter of support or send a card to José Robles who spent a year living in sanctuary at a local church with support from CBS and other faith-based organizations and was detained in July. Read more about José here: https://www.sanctuarydowntownseattle.com/home and write to him (Spanish or easy-to-understand English preferred) here: c/o Colectiva Legal, 201 SW 153rd St, Burien WA 98166. .
Provide Needed Items: Donate food, children’s clothing, and supplies to those helping victims of the massive Mississippi ICE Raids. Send items to Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance, P.O. Box 1104, Jackson MS, 39215 and visit https://yourmira.wpcomstaging.com/2019/08/22/relief-work-continues-in-hurting-communities/ for more information.
Provide Needed Items: Donate your frequent flier miles and credit card points to reunite families: https://www.miles4migrants.org/donate.php
Give a Monetary Donation: Provide bond money that allows detained immigrants to go back to their lives and families while they advocate for their legal status at https://fairfightbondfund.org/JCIJ
Give a Monetary Donation: Help DACA recipients cover their DACA renewal fees by contributing here: DACArenewalfund.com
Ongoing Volunteer Opportunities:
Spanish Speakers: If you can speak Spanish well, and would like to volunteer to serve people who have immigrated to Washington and have asked for help, please contact Dina Tanners
Non-Immigration Lawyers: We have an email distribution list for non-immigration attorneys interested in learning about opportunities to engage. While immigration attorneys are in high demand, there are opportunities for other attorneys to provide assistance. If you are an attorney interested in learning about such opportunities, contact Marla Zink
Hosting Asylum Seekers: It takes all of us, working together, to stand with immigrants in our community. Over the past few years, the Church Council of Greater Seattle (CCGS) has been assisting asylum seekers with housing and providing several other support services.
Congregation Beth Shalom is working to join forces with CCGS to provide housing for asylum seekers and support to our congregants who become host families. The Social Action Committee is embarking on this project and Haim and Jody Mizrahi will be facilitating the connection between CCGS and CBS. It is our goal at this time to identify people who are interested in participating in one or both of these areas of need.
• Providing short-term housing for asylum seekers: Click here to complete the volunteer host family for medium-term housing form.
• Providing assistance to host families (translating, transportation, social support, etc.): Click here to complete the support team for host families survey.
Contact: Haim Mizrahi or Jody Mizrahi
There are opportunities to volunteer with AIDNW. Visit their page: https://aidnw.org/get-involved/, to find out how to get connected.
- The Post-Detention Accompaniment Network, (PDAN) to accompany immigrants to hearings and other appointments;
- A visitation program to visit detainees at the Detention Center
- Spanish-speaking volunteers to help in the office in Tacoma; or financial support.
If you are interested in occasionally providing overnight hospitality to released immigrants, they can contact Stephanie Murray at World Relief
Want to stay up to date?
Interested in learning more about programs hosted by the CBS Immigration and Sanctuary Committee? Email Carol Benedick to be added to our CBS Immigration and Sanctuary List.
Community Organizations Working on Immigration Issues
HIAS is the global Jewish nonprofit that protects refugees—including women and children, and ethnic, religious, and sexual minorities—whose lives are in danger for being who they are. Guided by our values and history, HIAS helps refugees rebuild their lives in safety and advocates to ensure that all displaced people are treated with dignity. More info at @HIASrefugees and hias.org.
Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) promotes justice by defending and advancing the rights of immigrants through direct legal services, systemic advocacy, and community education. Unrestricted gifts – meaning gifts that aren’t tied to a specific program – come almost entirely from individuals, and are what make it possible for NWIRP to react immediately to emergency situations, such as the Family Separation Crisis.
The Fair Fight Immigrant Bond Fund provides bond money to liberate people from the horrendous conditions of the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma.