OLYMPIA BROWN UU CHURCH GIVEN RECOGNITION AWARD

BY VOCES DE LA FRONTERA’S NEW SANCTUARY MOVEMENT

 

Voces de la Frontera is a nationally recognized state-wide immigrant rights group that works to protect the civil rights of immigrants and low-wage workers, advocate for legislative change to benefit immigrant families, and grow youth leadership. One area of service is their New Sanctuary Movement (NSM).  This branch organizes Interfaith vigils to support families, a weekly silent prayer witnessing for immigrants going to Milwaukee’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) check-in meetings, and provides training for court accompaniment by allies to show support for immigrant people.

 

OBUUC voted to become a sanctuary support congregation in 2017.  Since then we have provided advocacy and material support to Voces de la Frontera.   We have provided meeting space to their Youth Empowered in the Struggle (YES) within our church for training, offered hospitality, sleeping space, and chaperone services during their 2018 YES Hunger Strike, and celebration space to share potluck dinners and interfaith services after downtown rallies.  Many of our church members provided funding for YES students to take a bus to Washington D.C. to lobby for continuing the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  Our Social Justice Committee members were trained in court accompaniment by Voces de la Frontera’s New Sanctuary Movement staff.   We have travelled to Kenosha, Walworth, and Milwaukee County Courts, to provide witness for documented and undocumented brothers and sisters. Several of us have attended Federal Immigration Courts in Chicago for the same purpose.  Many of you have contributed food for these events, purchased “bus tickets” to sponsor these youth, and volunteered to help provide transportation and work opportunities for a particular immigrant woman so she could support her family.  We have done Voter Registration with Voces de la Frontera and the Racine Interfaith Coalition during the recent Black Humanity Now street art project.  Our “sneeze guard” protective shield and our GOTV buttons have been shared with Voces de la Frontera staff organizers working out of the Racine labor Center.  Others have been dropping off baby care items for an immigrant family having a new baby son in October.  Recently many of you generously contributed to the New Sanctuary Movement program through our Offertory Outreach Collection. It has not gone unnoticed!