Since November 9th, Latinos Progresando’s offices have been flooded with calls and visits—people from all walks of life, wondering what they should be doing in light of the election results.
Deferred Action (DACA) recipients and the counselors, principals, and teachers who work with them are concerned about their future in the United States. Families are considering whether their best option is to pack up and return to their home countries. Parents are saying that they can’t celebrate the holidays this year—they need to save money in case of a major raid or deportation proceedings.
That is the level of fear that this campaign’s rhetoric has inspired. Before this election, families were coming to Latinos Progresando for information and resources, motivated by the desire to continue building a future in this country. Now, families are reaching out for a different reason, motivated by uncertainty, anxiety, and fear.
For many of us, and those who came before us, this fight is not new. The truth is, every generation of Mexicans, Latinos, and immigrants in the United States has been faced with the defense of basic human rights, of justice, of equal opportunity. Even in the last twenty years, things like Proposition 187, IIRAIRA, the Sensenbrenner Bill, Arizona SB 1070, and ongoing mass deportation programs have threatened the safety and stability of our communities.
Already, we’ve followed the example of generations before and risen up through boycotts, mass marches, and hunger strikes to build schools, start nonprofits, petition the stop of deportations, provide scholarships, and create business sectors that rival Chicago’s Magnificent Mile.
For generations we’ve fought, and it’s indefensible that we have to return to the well again, to dig up the strength to work for a solution to a problem we did not cause. Yet here we are. It’s still on us to continue this tradition of resistance. We will not be the generation to let the next one down.
At the same time, we continue to stand in solidarity with other communities—African Americans, Muslims, LGTBQ, and the disabled. We will not back down from your fight either, because our fight is the same.
For those who have not been engaged before but want to take a stand, we need your help, too. You can no longer afford to support from the sidelines—the president elect is assembling a team of people that have proven to be destructive to immigrant communities, to women, and communities of color. You may think that this does not impact you directly, but it does—how we react as a community, as a country, says everything about the type of people we are and the type of future we want to build.
Latinos Progresando will continue to be here with high-quality services and accurate information so that families can make the best decisions for their future. If you or someone you know is an immigrant, we encourage you to go speak to an accredited immigration representative now—you should have all of the information you can. If you want to support our work (and we need it), you can also make a donation to be sure that every family that comes to us for help can get it.
This is not a typical calling, because this is not a typical time, and we cannot get through this with the typical people—we need everyone.
On a walk-in basis, Latinos Progresando’s immigration legal services program had more than 400 client...
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