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URGENT: TAKE ACTION NOW TO PROTECT IMMIGRANTS
Call the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and 
Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE)
Tell them to Stop ICE Raids and Respect Places of Worship  

February 20, 2017
 
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) recently detained six men coming out of the hypothermia shelter at Rising Hope Mission Church in Alexandria, Virginia. Places of worship are considered a "sensitive location"[i] by ICE, which means that it is not ICE policy to make arrests or other enforcement actions at or near sensitive locations, such as houses of worship, schools or hospitals. Arresting ones leaving the church's ministry violates that policy.
 
Raids and ICE operations have been increasing as officials begin to carry out President Trump's recent executive orders to  build a wall[ii] across the U.S. southern border, increase raids, hire more immigration enforcement agents, detain families and children seeking asylum, and  force local police to serve as federal immigration agents [iii] . The Trump administration is implementing these orders by targeting all undocumented immigrants, including a  Methodist lay leader in Kansas [iv] , a  mother in Arizona [v] in the U.S. for 22 years ,  a mother with citizen children[vi] and a pending U-Visa in Denver who just entered sanctuary, and  men coming out of a church ministry   that provides shelter in extremely cold conditions. 


As ICE continues these egregious actions, people fear seeking services like shelter they desperately need to survive, and church and community leaders are reporting that people are afraid to go to school, hospitals and places of worship. It is devastating that people may even choose conditions that lead to fatal circumstances, including hypothermia and unaddressed medical emergencies, due to these irresponsible ICE operations.
 
Raids on immigrant families and communities will not make anyone any safer. Walling off America, reducing community safety, and failing to protect those in need decry our country's values of family unity, fairness and equality. Faith communities have demonstrated unwavering commitment to our immigrant neighbors, including more than  800 congregations[viii] that have pledged support for the Sanctuary Movement and 1,000 faith leaders who have opposed  [ix] policies that force local police to be immigration agents. Scripture calls us to love thy neighbor and welcome the sojourner by standing with our brothers and sisters to stop harmful deportations that tear families apart.
 
See our Disciples Refugee & Immigration Ministries statement against recent Immigrant and Refugee Executive Orders, and against recent raids, at:     https://www.discipleshomemissions.org/missions-advocacy/refugee-immigration-ministries/new-refugee-immigration-restrictions-our-churchs-response/statements-from-disciples-ucc-leaders-partners/
 
 
AND CALL ICE, DHS, & CONGRESS TODAY:
Immigration and Customs Enforcement: 888-351-4024  
Department of Homeland Security: 202-282-8000     
Members of Congress: 202-224-3121
 
Sample Script: "I'm calling to oppose recent ICE operations outside of Rising Hope Mission Church in Alexandria, Virginia. I urge you to immediately STOP inhumane and unjust ICE raids. I also demand that DHS commits to respect places of worship, schools and hospitals by not apprehending people in or near these sensitive locations. Raids don't make our communities any safer, and conducting operations directly outside of a place of worship is a moral outrage and a violation of religious liberty."  
 
One of the best ways to make your voice heard is by tweeting:   @realDonaldTrump, @WhiteHouse, and @ your Senators/Representatives[x]; posting a comment on  Facebook.com/WhiteHouse ; and submitting an electronic message at  whitehouse.gov/contact . .@[HANDLE]: Stop tearing families and communities apart with raids and deportations. #NoBanNoWallNoRaids #GreaterAs1 #Not1More
 
Follow @StanleyRea on Twitter, visit our website at
Refugee and Immigration Ministries Disciples Home Missions, [xi] subscribe to RIM WRAP Alerts, & "like" Refugee and Immigration Ministries Disciples Home Missions on Facebook to receive up-to-date info.  Reach Rev. Sharon Stanley-Rea at sstanley@dhm.disciples.org or 202-957-7826.

Follow  @sanctuarymvmt on Twitter & "like" the  National Sanctuary Movement [xiv] on Facebook to receive up-to-date alerts.  if you take action [xv].



Rev. Dr. Sharon Stanley-Rea, Director of Refugee & Immigration Ministries
Disciples Home Missions, 
Five Thomas Circle, N.W.
(202) 957-7826 (Cell), 
@StanleyRea

Refugee & Immigration Ministries is a ministry of Disciples Home Missions in Partnership with 
the Christian Church Capital Area and the Disciples Center for Public Witness
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