Ask Your School Districts to Protect Immigrants

  • Week of March 26, 2017

We are listening to those of you in deep blue states who have asked for actions beyond calling Congress. In case you missed it, here is an article about the Wall-of-Us action on calling your Sheriff. We agree that state and local actions are just as important and sometimes more impactful. That’s why this week we are asking all-of-us to call our local school districts and ask them to stand with our immigrant families. 

After Trump signed his Executive Order on immigration, the Department of Homeland Security "cracked down" on immigrants. The department's memos call for the removal of nearly all undocumented immigrants, a tripling of the number ICE agents, and the stripping of due process and privacy protections. ICE has gone into churches and courthouses. While ICE has not yet entered schools, our immigrant families are scared. As state director of a grassroots immigrant rights group Samuel Molina has said, “Some children are afraid to go to school, or have stopped attending altogether, out of fear of being deported."

In the words of David Bowie, “This is not America”.

To target Trump’s un-American policies, Wall-of-Us is consulting with immigration policy experts to focus on the most strategic actions. This week we are highlighting the work of The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) and the ACLU to focus on school districts.

As the ILRC states, “as a trusted institution in immigrant families’ lives, schools can play a critical role in ensuring immigrant families have access to important information and resources.” 

We must ensure that our schools play this critical role.

Here’s how:

* Remember that you do not need to have a child in your school district to advocate that your district stand with our immigrants. Members of the school board are (generally, but not always) elected positions.

1. Locate and review your local school district’s website. Does it include “know your rights” information for our immigrant families? Is it easy to find? Is it written in English and Spanish? Does it include information about a sanctuary or safe haven resolution similar to the Los Angeles Unified School District one here? (5 minutes)

2. Review this resource that the ILRC has put together for school districts. (3 minutes)

3. Call or email your school district and use this script, which refers to resources for your school district. (5-10 minutes)