Vigil set for Monday, June 18, at federal prison in Sheridan
This story was emailed June 14 by the Rural Organizing Project:
In the last month, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has torn hundreds of children away from their parents and placed both in separate detention facilities across the country. The sharp increase in the number of immigrants incarcerated has led ICE to turn to five federal prisons to house over 1,600 immigrants, including many seeking asylum. 123 immigrants and asylum seekers are now unjustly detained at Sheridan Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) in Yamhill County, OR. To make matters worse, lawyers have been denied access to those detained inside, leaving little recourse for parents to be reunited with their children. Rural Oregonians are coming together to demand justice and an end to ICE ripping families apart. Join us on Monday for a vigil in Sheridan in solidarity with those detained behind the walls of the federal prison.
Unidos Bridging Community, a Yamhill County-based immigrant rights organization, along with otherlocal groups, jumped into action when they heard the news that the federal prison in their county was being used to incarcerate immigrants and refugees.On Sunday afternoon, Unidos held a vigil with 52 people near the prison and they are also co-hosting a statewide vigil this coming Monday. Read more about the vigil, organized by Unidos, Rural Organizing Project, Gorge ICE Resistance, Yamhill County Democrats, Interfaith Movement for Immigrant Justice, Portland Immigrant Rights Coalition, and Causa on the facebook event here. Check out the vigil details and other ways to support the work at FCI Sheridan below.
Unidos and multiple local and statewide organizations are working to secure legal resources for those detained at FCI Sheridan, provide immediate support for those detained and to push back against the Trump Administration’s “zero-tolerance” policy that separates parents and children. Learning from the experience of those working in the Gorge to end the ICE contract at NORCOR, they are building upon the statewide work to end of the use of public institutions and federal prisons to detain immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers.
Here are the ways that human dignity groups and leaders around the state can support the work at FCI Sheridan:
• Join the vigil on Monday, June 18th from 5:30-7:00 pm in Sheridan, OR! Oregonians from all over the state will be gathering together this Monday to demand an immediate end to the use of FCI Sheridan for detention of immigrants and refugees. Stay tuned via the facebook event for details on location.
This is a statewide gathering, so please bring a sign that includes the name of your town or county to show our solidarity across rural Oregon. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know if you are attending so we can also include your county/group in the roster of participating communities.
• Donate to support immigrants and refugees detained at FCI Sheridan: Unidos is collecting funds for phone calls and commissary items. Donate on their webpage here and include “For Sheridan” in the notes. Alternatively, you can mail a check to Unidos at 309 NE Third St. Suite 1, McMinnville OR 97128 and be sure to include “For Sheridan” in the memo line.
Support and/or volunteer as part of the legal response at FCI Sheridan: Innovation Law Lab is seeking volunteer attorneys, legal assistants, mental health providers, community resource people, interpreters and others for a coordinated legal response. Sign up here to volunteer with and support the legal response.
• Faith leaders take action: Local clergy from Yamhill County and Interfaith Movement for Immigrant Justice (IMIrJ) are coordinating a faith response. If you are a member of clergy sign onto this letter to FCI Sheridan by Sunday. In addition, clergy can sign up to do a visit to immigrant and refugees detained by ICE at FCI Sheridan by sending an email to email@example.com.
Just last month, as part of ROP’s Rural Caucus & Strategy Session, rural Oregonians rallied in The Dalles to demand an end to the ICE contract at NORCOR, a local public jail. This Monday we will come together again in solidarity with immigrants and refugees detained by ICE and held at FCI Sheridan. The sharp increase in the number of people detained by ICE means that the federal agency will increasingly turn to our public institutions, local jails and federal prisons to incarcerate immigrants and refugees. Rural Oregonians across the state are resisting the use of our institutions to detain and deport our neighbors. Join ROP and Unidos on Monday for a vigil in Sheridan and stay tuned to ROPnet over the next few weeks for updates and strategies to resist ICE and fight back!
Emma, Cara, Hannah and the ROP team