MEDIA RELEASE: Prayer vigils for immigration reform in Durham, Greensboro, and Goldsboro on Sunday call for humane immigration reform

Local events in Durham, Greensboro, and Goldsboro on Sunday call for humane immigration reform

CONTACT:
Chris Liu-Beers, NC Council of Churches
919-828-6501919-828-6501 | chris@ncchurches.org 

Dan Rearick, NC Justice Center
919-861-2073919-861-2073 | danrearick@ncjustice.org

RALEIGH (August 22, 2013) – People of all denominations and faith traditions will participate in events in Durham, Greensboro, and Goldsboro on Sunday, August 25, to highlight the need for a just and humane reform of our country’s outdated immigration laws.  Events are being coordinated across the nation as Congressional members are in their home districts during the August recess. 

Along with the events, the NC Council of Churches is distributing 10,000 church bulletin inserts across the state to help explain why immigration reform is moral and necessary. Congregants are being urged to contact their Representatives and tell them that the time has come for a just and moral immigration reform that unifies families, supports workers, and moves us forward together. 

The Council of Churches and the NC Justice Center applaud the progress that has been made so far toward an immigration reform measure that could bring millions of immigrants out of the shadows and allow them to participate more fully in civic and economic life. However, many organizations, including the Council of Churches and the NC Justice Center, remain concerned that the Senate bill spends billions on border militarization and is so strict that it will prevent millions of aspiring citizens from obtaining legal status. Meanwhile, the House has taken no meaningful steps toward reform and has instead focused on piecemeal bills like the “SAFE Act”, which would continue to place the burden for enforcing immigration laws on local law enforcement and further policies that would tear apart immigrant families without providing any legal path. 

“We believe that moral immigration reform means that one treats immigrants with dignity and respect, and doesn’t criminalize migrants or further divide families and communities,” said Daniel Rearick, an attorney with the NC Justice Center. “As North Carolinians, we all do our part to contribute, and we’re all the better for having hard working, new immigrants as members of our communities — being customers in our stores, giving to local churches and charities, and participating as parents in our schools. That’s why we need an immigration process that strengthens our communities.”

“The status quo of broken immigration laws is harming families and churches,” said Chris Liu-Beers, a program associate at the North Carolina Council of Churches who works with immigrant communities across the state. “We need humane reforms that keep families together and lift people out of the shadows. The Senate has acted and now the ball is in the House’s court. Faith communities are first responders in the midst of this immigration crisis and we will continue to fight every day until reform is enacted.”

Details about the events: 
 
DURHAM
Sunday, August 25, 5:00 p.m.  
Interfaith Prayer Vigil
People’s Plaza (CCB Plaza)
201 N. Corcoran St.
Durham, NC 27701
Contact:  Dan Rearick, 919-861-2073919-861-2073, danrearick@ncjustice.org

GREENSBORO
Sunday, August 25, 4:00 p.m.
Interfaith Prayer Vigil
First Friends Meeting
2100 W. Friendly Ave.
Contact: Lori Khamala, 919-491-0039919-491-0039, LKhamala@afsc.org
 
GOLDSBORO
Sunday, August 25, 1:00 p.m.
Marcha por La Reforma Migratoria/March for Immigration Reform
Herman Park
Goldsboro, NC  27530
Contact: Sergio Sánchez, 919-221-1803919-221-1803