The history of immigration and immigration laws in this country have been rooted in white supremacy built on systemic racism against black, brown, and indigenous people. We have witnessed years of anti-immigration laws that repeatedly favor white skin and negatively target immigrants of color. We recognize the intersection between immigration and race and strive to continuously lift up black and brown immigrant voices in our advocacy and outreach work.
NC Sanctuary 4
Juana Tobar Ortega fled from Guatemala in 1992 after receiving threats from armed combatants to seek asylum in the U.S. She is a mother of four who reported to ICE for required check-ins until she was ordered to leave the country. She went into sanctuary at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in Greensboro in May 2017. Keep Juana with family and sign her petition. For more information and ways to support, click here.
José Chicas, fleeing El Salvador during its civil war, came to the U.S. to seek asylum in the 1980s. He has been an integral part of the local community, pastoring the Iglesia Evangélica Jesús el Pan de Vida in Raleigh, NC and working as a custodian at a local church. He has served his community for over two decades now. José went into sanctuary at the School for Conversion in June 2017. Help Pastor José stay with his family, his community, and his congregation. Sign his petition here. For more information and ways to support, click here.
Eliseo Jimenez went into sanctuary in October 2017 at Umstead Park United Church of Christ in Raleigh. He fled from Mexico at age 17 and has lived here and started a family. He has four U.S.-citizen children. After he was deported in 2007, he risked returning so that he could support his family. Help Eliseo by volunteering here. For more information, click here.
Rosa del Carmen Ortez Cruz, mother of four children, fled Honduras from extreme domestic violence and came to the U.S. in 2002 in fear of her life. She cannot return to Honduras because her abuser has threatened her life. She entered sanctuary in April 2018 at Church of Reconciliation (Chapel Hill Mennonite Fellowship). Sign her petition here. To support Rosa, click here.
In our current political climate, a troubling surge of hate speech, hate crimes and racism has been unleashed against people who came here due to war, terror, political persecution, extreme poverty, and other expressions of violence. US immigrant communities are living in fear caused by the termination of life-saving policies such as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS). They are also endangered due to racial profiling, raids and arbitrary deportations. These extreme actions separate families and are instilling acute fear and anxiety throughout our communities.
As people of conscience, we stand against these unjust policies that needlessly harm and cruelly separate families, neighbors and friends. We believe that our calling is to welcome immigrants, offering them hospitality and justice. We stand in solidarity with hundreds of thousands of people who are living in our state peaceably and productively and are now threatened by these inhumane actions.
We believe that this moment of crisis provides an opportunity for local governments, schools, health centers, and faith communities to dedicate themselves to building a “beloved community” that assures justice for all. We, the undersigned congregations, organizations and individuals, pledge to work as the North Carolina Sanctuary Coalition. As such we pledge our time, energy, and resources to support immigrants in our communities by offering physical sanctuary, emotional support, and persistent advocacy until we achieve comprehensive immigration reform and justice for all.
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Volunteer Opportunities in North Carolina
Rosa del Carmen Ortez Cruz — Church of Reconciliation (Mennonite Fellowship)
José Chicas — School For Conversion
Juana Tobar Ortega — Saint Barnabas Episcopal Church
Eliseo Jimenez — Umstead Park United Church of Christ
A growing movement of immigrant and faith communities have committed to doing what Congress and the Administration refuse to do: protect and stand with immigrants facing deportation. However, many congregations have questions. Who is seeking sanctuary? Who leads sanctuary? How do faith communities declare sanctuary? To answer these questions we have put together a list of links to help congregations who are considering becoming sanctuary congregations or know someone in need of sanctuary from deportation.
Sanctuary 101: How Churches and Synagogues are Stopping Deportations
Videos from the “Sanctuary Matters” conference sponsored by the NC Council of Churches
Council of Churches Sanctuary E-course
Toolkits for Congregations Considering Sanctuary
Sanctuary Not Deportation: A Faithful Witness to Building Welcoming Communities
New Sanctuary Movement Toolkit
En Español: Manuel del Movimiento Santuario
Conference Call: How to Offer Sanctuary (AFSC)
Sanctuary Report from the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville
Sanctuary: A Discernment Guide for Congregations (PCUSA)
Sanctuary Toolkit (Unitarian Universalist)
2011 ICE Morton Memo (about ICE actions in “sensitive locations”)
New Sanctuary Legal Toolkit (Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law)
Sanctuary Congregations FAQs (ACLU)
Sanctuary Church for Immigrants (Insurance Board)
What to do if ICE comes to your faith community (IMIrJ)
Religious Organizations, Refuge for Undocumented Immigrants, and Tax Exemption
Legal Considerations for Faith Communities (UCC Webinar)
Toolkit on Organizing for Just Immigration Policies at the Local and State Level
Sanctuary Movement in the Trump Era: New Strategy and Tactics in the Post-Election Reality
Rapid Response Toolkit for Faith Allies
Roles of Sanctuary Supporting Churches
Solidarity and Sanctuary: A Survey of Options
Practicing Sanctuary: A Guide to Radical Welcome & Collective Care
Community Defense Starter Guide
Congregational Action Guide
Expanded Sanctuary/Protect and Defend Resources
Links for Discernment
Webinar on Faithful Discernment: Is Your Congregation Called to Offer Sanctuary
Reasons for Supporting Sanctuary
Resources for those in Need of Sanctuary
Know Your Rights (NILC)
Know Your Rights (El Pueblo)
Know Your Rights (AFSC)
Picked Up: A Guide for Immigrants Detained in NC (NC Justice Center)
Emergency Planning Guide (NC Justice Center)
AILA Find a Lawyer
IAN National Legal Services Directory
Immigration Referral List (NC)