We are sure many of you are feeling as stunned and worried as we are about the election results and about what is in store for everyone in our country — most especially for immigrants and refugees.
Please know that AKIN is already working with others in the immigrants’ rights movement and with allied groups to make sense of what is happening and to plan for ways to push back against the dangerous dynamics now in play. For instance, the weekend after the election several members of AKIN, together with several members of the Comité Popular de Knoxville, traveled to Black Mountain, NC to attend a conference of grassroots immigrants’ rights groups from across the Southeast. Further, organizers from the Tennessee Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRCC) visited Knoxville around that same time, and among other things they met with a number of young DREAMers close to AKIN and the Comité Popular. Their discussion included the future of DACA and a plan for coming back to the General Assembly in the spring with a new bill aimed at achieving better access to higher education for immigrant youth.
Meanwhile, many service providers and faith leaders report an avalanche of calls from members of local immigrant communities hungry for reliable information and filled with doubt and fear about their future. For instance, immigrant and refugee parents have expressed concern about whether their children are safe in school. Uncertainty rules.
Discussion and action in support of basic human rights has never been more important. Getting active in AKIN is one way you might want to build your own response.
Please note that our next regularly scheduled meeting will take place at 5:30 pm on Wednesday, January 18, 2017 at St. James Episcopal Church, 1101 N. Broadway.
AKIN is also now involved in co-planning an event on Wednesday evening, December 14, 2016. A location and exact time will be announced soon. This event is aimed primarily at the immigrant community, but supporters of all backgrounds are welcome. The meeting will be aimed at getting out reliable information, clearing up unfounded rumors, reaffirming shared values of respect for all people and for fundamental human rights, and helping global migrants among us to find the support and information they need in this moment.