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NCCLO Holds Governor & Attorney General Accountable

North Carolina Governor and Attorney General accountable to leaders of the NC Congress of Latino Organizations at a public meeting attended by close to 1,000 Latinos

The North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper, and the Attorney General Josh Stein provided an accountability report to close to 1,000 Latinos on the promises made as candidates in 2016 [Article Spanish] before reacting to the NC Congress of Latino Organizations Priority Agenda that was developed with input of over 3,500 Latinos who participated in listening sessions this year.

Governor Roy Cooper and Attorney General Josh Stein announced they kept their promises to:


  • Improve access to health care for Latino families by holding insurance companies accountable for delivering culturally and linguistically appropriate services as part of the $30 billion medicaid transformation. 
  • The Governor shared he vetoed harmful legislation that would deputize all Sheriffs across the state to act as ICE agents.

Attorney General:

  • Participated in the successful legal action in defense of DACA
  • Represented hundreds of Latino families living at mobile home parks in negotiations with abusive landlords.

The highlight of the evening was a public pledge made by Governor Roy Cooper to protect essential workers by focusing on social distancing, proper sanitation and other necessary measures in their homes and transportation, in addition to providing testing in migrant agricultural worker camps. Latinos represent 44 percent of all documented cases of Covid-19 in the state. “I am going to prepare an executive order to protect [essential] workers, agricultural workers, workers in meat and poultry processing plants and in other areas, and I am going to be looking for the best way that that order can be applied,” Cooper said.

Other pledges from the Governor and Attorney General to the NC Congress of Latino Organizations include:

  • A promise to fight for funding and prioritize hiring of bilingual counselors, nurses and interpreters at public schools across the state as required by the landmark Leandro Court ruling. 
  • The Attorney General pledged to bring a new challenge to the recent changes the Trump administration made to the Obama-era program that shields certain undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children from deportation. 
  • AG Josh Stein also promised to join legal action by other Attorney General’s across the United States in taking action against public charge rules and arrests of immigrants at courthouses without a warrant/court order.    


Other media coverage:


WASHINGTON INTERFAITH NETWORK SECURES $2.5 Million for DC Immigrant Legal Services

WIN organized immigrants and allies in DC to push for $2.5 million in city funding to go toward immigrants' legal services. Mayor Bowser hosted budget engagement forums throughout February, and WIN partnered with legal service providers to turn out nearly 200 people to support the funding. In her State of the District address, Mayor Bowser announced that she would raise the funding from $900,000 to $2.5 million. Read more here and watch this video.

NC Congress Of Latino Organizations Wins Sheriff McFadden’s Commitment To Protect Every Citizen Regardless Of Immigration Status Taking Power Away From ICE

Over 700 Latinos connected with local congregations, non-profits, and community groups from across Mecklenburg County turned out for a public accountability meeting with Sheriff Garry L. McFadden. 
Latinos demanded clarity from Sheriff McFadden about the county's 287(g) agreement with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. 
The 287(g) program allows deputies to hold an individual in jail so that ICE may assume physical custody of the individual. Detainers are not arrest warrants, and do not provide probable cause for arrest. ICE does not compensate law enforcement for the additional cost associated with honoring immigration detainers. 
During the public meeting the Sheriff ratified the end of the 287 (g) agreements and promised to protect everyone regardless of their immigration status. The Sheriff agreed to meet regularly with the Latino leadership, promised to hire additional bilingual deputies, and create a new unit dedicated to working for/with immigrant families. 
The action was organized by the 13 organizations affiliated with the NC Congress of Latino organizations, a statewide network of Latino institutions affiliated with Metro IAF in North Carolina.

Immigrants Win Revisions to U Visa Application Policy, Sheriff and Police Chief Commit to No Collaboration with ICE

Leaders listen as Forsyth County Sheriff promises not to work with ICE and Winston Salem Police Chief commits to U Visa reforms.
In Forsyth County, 400 immigrants won a commitment from the Chief of Police who agreed to extend the review window for U Visa applications from two to four years after a crime against an immigrant has occurred. The newly elected Sheriff promised not to collaborate with ICE in the separation of families.

BUILD Wins Commitment from Baltimore’s Mayor to Recognize Parish IDs Issued to Immigrants

Father Bruce Lewandowski, Priest at Sacred Heart and other clergy speaking about the importance of the new parish ID cards
On June 6, Mayor Pugh promised to instruct city agencies, including law enforcement, to recognize a parish identification card. In October, she and Archbishop William E. Lori joined BUILD leaders at member Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church to announce the launch of parish identification cards that will be recognized by city agencies. These parish-issued identification cards, issued by Catholic congregations with the full support of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, will be a form of non-government identification available to members of the congregations. The identification card will be recognized by Baltimore City law enforcement and other city agencies as an alternative form of identification in specified situations. Mayor Pugh committed to training police officers on the Parish ID within two weeks.  
In the climate of violence that has plagued Baltimore over the last three years, immigrants have often hesitated to contact police to report crimes, fearing that police might involve federal agents which could lead to deportation of family or friends.  Immigrants worked with BUILD and Sacred Heart to design the cards and spoke about the trust that would begin to be restored between the immigrant communities and the Baltimore Police Department. Father Bruce Lewandowski of Sacred Heart stated, "This is just one step toward making Baltimore a city of neighbors and not strangers.” 
Press coverage: 

AIM Action Wins Commitments for Flower Branch Explosion Survivors

Survivors share their stories following the tragic gas explosion that killed seven apartment building residents.
After a deadly gas explosion at an apartment building nearly two years ago that killed 7, including two small children, AIM organized an immensely successful action demanding outcomes and gaining further respect for the most marginalized in Montgomery County, MD. Gaining significant press coverage of the action, survivors of the tragedy, most of whom are undocumented immigrants, identified affordable mental health, rental assistance, and inclusion in the County’s evaluation of the response to the fire as three key issues for four County Councilmembers to respond. All four councilmembers agreed to the demands in front of 236 AIM leaders, and committed to coming back in three months to share the progress that had been made.
Stories from Survivors:
Brother Chris Posch, lead Pastor of St. Camillus Catholic Church, opened the night explaining that AIM leaders had listened to over 50 survivors. “In those stories,” he shared, “we heard a lot of pain. Pain of losing family members; The pain of dealing with physical injuries or PTSD, and no longer able to provide for their families. And the pain of wanting a voice to ensure better outcomes if another tragedy like this occurs, but finding that you have none.”
Ms. Victoria, surrounded by family and friends, recounted surviving the horror of the night only to face the challenges of surviving with physical injuries that have prohibited her from working and the ability to provide for her family.
Mr. Gustavo Zuniga described that when the floor collapsed beneath him, he and his wife fell and he passed out. It was his wife who pulled him out of the rubble and the fire. He explained that the psychological impacts of the trauma have made it difficult for many members to continue working as they did before the explosion, thus putting them at risk of becoming, once again, homeless, because they cannot earn the salary necessary to pay rent each month.
An audit of the County’s response was commissioned six months after the explosion, said Mr. Edy, another survivor of the explosion. Quietly, he asked, “Do you know how many surviving families were interviewed?” To a silent room, he answered, “Not one of us.”
Additional Press Coverage:

VOICE Protects Immigrant Community, Wins New Regulations for Students Celebrating Muslim and Jewish Holidays

At a 535-person action held in Fairfax County and a 275-person action in Prince William County, VOICE won commitments from both jurisdictions that County Police will not act as agents of Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE). Public school systems in both counties also committed to honoring Jewish and Muslim holidays by issuing new regulations that student absences related to the celebration of religious holidays will not affect attendance records. There will also be no tests or major school events scheduled during those holidays.

Metro IAF New York Affiliates Win Commitments from NYPD Commissioner on Immigration & Gun Control

On April 30th, almost 700 leaders from SBC, MT and EBC packed Immaculate Conception Church in the South Bronx. NYPD Commissioner O’Neill committed to action if any local police would not work with us, and to meet to be fully briefed on DNSIB. He also committed to work with us to find concrete ways to quell fear in immigrant communities around deportations. Commissioner O’Neill will attend an EBC Assembly in June to report on actions he is taking with Metro IAF.

Press coverage is available HERE and HERE.

Maryland IAF wins DREAM Act ballot initiative in landslide vote.

Maryland IAF led the Maryland DREAM Act ballot initiative campaign to victory with 58.3 % of the vote.   This law will allow undocumented immigrant high school graduates to attend Maryland public colleges and universities at in-state tuition rates.  Maryland DREAM's success at the ballot box gives hope to national efforts to fix our broken immigration system.  Maryland IAF organized over 250 DREAM events in religious congregations throughout the state, educating Marylanders about the importance of the DREAM act in an unprecidented grass-roots effort led by the faith community. 

Maryland IAF wins the Maryland Dream Act for immigrant scholars

Thanks to the leadership of AIM (Montgomery County), BUILD (Baltimore), and PATH (Howard County), the Maryland legislature passed the DREAM Act in 2011.  This historic legislation allows immigrant high school graduates with taxpaying parents to attend public universities at in-state tuition rates, regardless of immigration status.  For more information on next steps to preserve this victory:


In the News

WIN Organizes for Immigrant Legal Services, Affordable Housing

Monday, May 21, 2018
Washington Interfaith Network

WIN Leaders launched new Ward 1 demands around affordable housing and immigration to six candidates for Ward 1 councilmember.| Photo by David Choy 

On April 25th Washington Interfaith Network (WIN) packed the basement of Sacred Heart Catholic Church with 304 leaders and 6 candidates vying for Council Member of Ward 1 in D.C. Sacred Heart is the largest immigrant church in DC and the turnout reflected that diversity. The action was WIN’s first attempt at doing an action in both English and Spanish, using 300 interpretation headsets. Demands were made for $2.5 million to expand legal assistance for immigrants, to build affordable housing on a piece of land owned by the National Parks Service, and to take on a slum landlord in the neighborhood.

Maryland Metro IAF Affiliates March to Baltimore Homeland Security Office, Demands Meeting with ICE

Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Maryland Metro IAF Affiliates

Maryland Metro IAF leaders march to Homeland Security office in demand of a meeting with ICE.

Metro IAF affiliates AIM, BUILD and PATH, along with the Immigration Outreach Service Center, marched with 50 leaders from Baltimore City Hall to the Department of Homeland Security in demand of a meeting with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Maryland IAF organizations are fighting for ICE to provide more clarity in its detainment and deportation policies. AIM, BUILD, IOSC and PATH are also pushing immigration officers to remove the word “Police” from their uniforms and are pressing ICE to provide information on where they take detained immigrants after their arrest. Metro IAF affiliates have sent three letters to ICE agents since July requesting to meet regarding the detainment and deportation of local undocumented immigrants. All Maryland Metro IAF letters to ICE have gone unanswered. 

370 Common Ground Leaders Meet with Milwaukee Police Chief, Push for Better Relationship with Immigrant Community

Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Common Ground

Common Ground clergy leader speaking with Milwaukee police officer

Over 370 Common Ground leaders gathered in St Adalbert's Catholic Church on Tuesday, September 26 to meet with Milwaukee Police Department Chief, Edward A. Flynn. Leaders called for a new relationship in how the Police Department works with the immigrant community. This meeting was a first step in recognizing the real needs of undocumented residents who feel real fear to communicate with the police, and real fear in their own neighborhoods due to experiences with violent assaults, burglaries, robberies, and nuisance properties affecting their quality of life and safety.

Common Ground is pushing the Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) for clarity and better communication about the department's policy on coordinating with ICE/DHS. Leaders are also fighting for a partnership between Common Ground and the MPD to investigate violent crimes affecting the immigrant community, a recommitment to enforce existing policy regarding providing interpretation services, and education for officers on the federal U visa program which offers a path to citizenship for victims of violent crimes.

Common Ground leaders push for better relations between Milwaukee police and immigrant community

CONECT Turns Out in Support of Jung Courville, South Korean Immigrant Facing Deportation

Friday, September 1, 2017

300 people pack St. Jerome to stand in solidarity with Jung Courville and her family.

With just three or four days notice, more than 300 St. Jerome and CONECT leaders turned out on Monday, August 7th for a Prayer Vigil in support of Jung Courville and her family after her recent order of deportation.  Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling and Senator Richard Blumenthal also attended. Courville is a South Korean immigrant and has been the in US for 18 years, married to a US Citizen for 14 years, and is the mother of two with no criminal record.  Attendees signed 426 letters of support for Courville, sending the letters to ICE Officials in Hartford and the Immigration Court in Philadelphia.

Jung and family receive a blessing during a prayer vigil in Norwalk, CT.

Senator Richard Blumenthal addresses St. Jerome and CONECT attendees during prayer vigil.

At GBIO Teach-Ins, Hundreds Gather to Learn about Threats Facing the Muslim Community

Thursday, August 31, 2017
Greater Boston Interfaith Organization

Greater Boston Interfaith Organization (GBIO) Muslim Teach-In at Temple Isaiah, Lexington, MA

270 people attended GBIO’s and Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center (ISBCC)’s July 25th Teach-In. Muslim leaders shared perspectives on being Muslim in Boston, and panelists discussed discrimination and Islamophobic policies, including the travel ban, the Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) policy, and potential legislation/Executive Order declaring the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization. 70 interfaith donors committed to making a symbolic donation to the ISBCC or other Muslim organization, to show solidarity, and to disrupt the targeting of Muslims through donor tracking. 60 pledged to join a campaign fighting threats to the Muslim community.

The July event was one of a series of Teach-Ins being held throughout Greater Boston, as part of the Out of Many, One campaign, run by GBIO and member organization ISBCC to address the targeting of Muslims and immigrants. 120 people attended the first in the series, held at First Church in Cambridge on April 30th. Additional Teach-Ins are scheduled for later in the year.

The July Teach-In, at Temple Isaiah in Lexington, began with a short introduction by Senior Rabbi Howard Jaffe, followed by a coffee table conversation between Rabbi Jaffe and Samer Naseredden, the Youth Programs Director at ISBCC. Samer provided his own personal story, responded to some basic questions about Islam, and gave a community perspective.

The second part of the program featured a panel discussion, moderated by Associate Rabbi Jill Perlman, exploring discrimination and threats facing the Greater Boston Muslim community. Panelists included Stephanie Marzouk, an immigration lawyer and co-founder of the Muslim Justice League, and Nadeem Mazen, an educator, entrepreneur, and community organizer who was elected to the Cambridge City Council in 2013 and again in 2015, when he received the most votes across all 23 candidates for City Council.

GBIO Springs into Action on Criminal Justice, Healthcare, Housing and Immigrant and Muslim Organizing

Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Greater Boston Interfaith Organization

Over 700 people packed Temple Israel in Boston on May 18th to support Greater Boston Interfaith Organization’s campaigns: Criminal Justice Reform, Healthcare, Affordable Housing, and “Out of Many, One” — a campaign addressing the targeting of immigrants and Muslims. Over 220 people committed to action on Criminal Justice Reform — asking friends outside Greater Boston to call their legislators, coordinating in-district meetings, or attending a public hearing. Over 140 people committed to support the “Out of Many, One” campaign, ether by attending a Bystander training or attending a Muslim Teach-In.

At the assembly, GBIO leaders also committed to building new relationships with corporate leaders. Bishop Miles, from our sister Metro IAF organization in Baltimore, shared stories of BUILD’s victories negotiating with corporate powerhouse Johns Hopkins to create jobs for returning citizens and the chronically unemployed.

At GBIO’s first Muslim Teach-in, over 100 commit to fighting discrimination

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

120 people attended Greater Boston Interfaith Organization’s first in a series of Teach-ins, part of GBIO’s new Out of Many, One campaign which addresses the targeting of Muslims and immigrants. At the teach-in, members of GBIO and the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center (ISBCC) shared experiences of being Muslim in Boston, and Shannon Erwin and Yusufi Vali, Executive Directors of the Muslim Justice League and ISBCC respectively, gave an overview of specific threats facing the Muslim community. Over 100 interfaith donors committed to making a symbolic donation to the ISBCC or other Muslim organizations, as part of a campaign to interfere with the targeting of Muslims through the tracking of donor lists. 6-8 additional teach-ins will be held over the next several months.

Durham CAN Leaders Affirm Durham as a City of Inclusion

Sunday, March 5, 2017
news observer

Over 1,300 Muslims, Latinos, Refugees and allies turned out for a successful public negotiation with Sheriff, Police, City, County and School governments. Both the Sheriff and Chief of Police ratified their commitment not to collaborate with ICE and continue strengthening relationships with immigrants and the general community. Durham Public Schools Superintendent agreed to work with CAN in restricting, as much as possible, immigration enforcement activities within the school district's campuses.

Metro IAF Leader Rabbi Mosbacher & the Trump Refugee Order

Monday, January 30, 2017
Associated Press

Rabbi Joel Mosbacher had just finished the morning's Shabbat service when he got an urgent message: Rabbis were needed at New York's Kennedy Airport. People were being detained under President Donald Trump's sharp travel restrictions on refugees. Would he come pray?

By sundown, Mosbacher was part a group of rabbis at the airport, playing guitar and conducting a Havdalah service marking the end of the Sabbath. About 2,000 people gathered to rally against the new policy.

"We know what it's like to be the stranger," said Mosbacher, a Reform rabbi at Temple Shaaray Tefila, noting that Jewish refugees were at times turned away from the U.S. "As a person of faith, it was so important to be there."

From pulpits to sidewalk vigils, clergy have been part of a religious outpouring against Trump's plan to suspend refugee entry from seven majority Muslim countries. Faith leaders who support the president's executive order as a way to fight terrorism have been far less vocal, ceding the religious discussion to those overwhelmingly opposed to the president's sweeping immigration order, which suspends refugee admissions for four months and indefinitely bars refugees from Syria.

Rally at Kennedy Airport

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, which runs the largest refugee resettlement network in the country, said it "strongly disagreed" with the prohibitions and pledged to work "vigorously to ensure refugees are humanely welcomed." The Orthodox Union, the largest association for American Orthodox synagogues, acknowledged the complexities of fighting terror, but said "discrimination of any group solely upon religion is wrong and anathema to the great traditions of religious and personal freedoms upon which this country was founded."


South Bronx Churches (SBC) & Manhattan Together (MT) Building Power with Immigrants

Monday, January 30, 2017
South Bronx Churches & Manhattan Together

On January 30th, leaders from South Bronx Churches and Manhattan Together held relational meetings with most of the 100 immigrants who came to a legal clinic hosted by the SBC member organization, the Mexican Coalition. Many of these immigrants were eager to build power to make positive change in their communities and beyond. This is the first of several such immigrant focused relationship building events planned for Manhattan and the Bronx over the next two months.

1,200 Strong: PATH Leads Fight for Sanctuary County

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Working with members of the County Council, People Acting Together in Howard (PATH) leaders organized a 1,200 person action January 29 in support of a bill that would make Howard County a Sanctuary County. At the action, over 300 people committed to hold house meetings in their communities to understand the challenges facing immigrants today.

See more coverage here:

Senate Sends Driver’s Licenses for Undocumented Immigrants Bill to Gov’s Desk

Thursday, May 30, 2013
CT News Junkie


bill that would allow undocumented immigrants to apply for a driver’s license received final passage Wednesday night as a group of advocates watched from the Senate balcony. Congregations Organized for a New Connecticut, a nonpartisan interfaith group, pushed for the legislation in meetings with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and encouraged them to move forward with it. The organization of about a 15,000 people was founded in 2011, but this was their first full-court press for legislation. It was an uphill battle. All four bills that would have permitted these drivers’ licenses died in the Transportation Committee, but the organization with the support of Rep. Juan Candelaria of New Haven was determined to find a vehicle for passage.

Weighing IDs For Illegal Immigrants

Monday, May 6, 2013
Wall Street Journal

Connecticut Democrats are rallying around a plan that would allow people who are in the U.S. illegally to get driver's licenses, making the state one of several to consider the idea this year.... The plan's advocates say it would ensure these immigrants are given proper driving tests and allow them to get car insurance. The proposal could also provide additional state revenue from registration fees and car taxes. "This is a population that has been here for many years and must drive to conduct their lives, and bringing them into the system will benefit the general public," said the Rev. James Manship, co-chairman of Congregations Organized for a New Connecticut, a coalition of religious groups.

Connecticut General Assembly expected to let undocumented immigrants drive legally

Monday, April 29, 2013
New Haven Register

HARTFORD — The leadership of the General Assembly says the votes are there and they expect to pass a bill this session that would offer driver’s licenses to undocumented residents, citing reasons including training, insurance, revenue and safety.... CONECT, or Congregations for a New Connecticut, which represents some 28 different faith communities in the state, has lobbied hard for the changes since January, making arguments on the economic benefits of insuring all drivers and bringing new revenues to the state, but mainly on the safety aspect.

2,000 attend New Haven hearing on bill to give licenses to undocumented

Tuesday, March 5, 2013
The New Haven Register

NEW HAVEN — Carolina Bortolleto, an undocumented student from Danbury, came forward Monday to testify, not for herself, but on behalf of her parents, explaining what drivers’ licenses would for mean for them. “Sitting in the back seat I can see my mom shaking and praying if she sees the police behind us. ... ‘Pull over anywhere. Pretend we are stopping for coffee. Pretend we are stopping at this restaurant, because if the police stop us, we are going to be deported,” Bortolleto said of the daily fear they experience just driving to work or to school or the grocery store. “All these basic tasks that you take for granted, are filled with anxiety for me and my family,” said Bortolleto, who is a leader in CT Students for a DREAM. She was one of 2,000 people from around the state who came to Wilbur Cross High School where they filled the auditorium and spilled into the gymnasium and the cafeteria to testify on behalf of proposed legislation that would provide licenses to the undocumented.

Let Immigrants Get Driver's Licenses

Monday, February 18, 2013
Hartfort Courant

In a perfect world, everyone in this country would be here legally and be eligible for all of the privileges of citizenship. In the world we've got, however, there are some 12 million undocumented immigrants in the country, tens of thousands in Connecticut. The vast majority came here to work and gain a better life — the same reason people have been coming to these shores for nearly four centuries. As New York Times writer Adam Davidson recently observed, the immigrants mostly help the economy. But to do so, many need to drive.... Congregations Organized for a New Connecticut, a group of more than two dozen religious congregations from the southwestern part of the state, has researched the issue and believes that allowing an estimated 54,000 undocumented immigrants to get licenses would make driving safer and less expensive for everyone.

Hugh Bailey: Working on behalf of the powerless

Monday, February 4, 2013
Connecticut Post

The angry letters practically write themselves. Illegal means illegal. Stop rewarding law-breakers. And on and on. Few issues lend themselves to demagoguery as easily as immigration. So the idea of allowing people referred to as illegal immigrants to obtain driver's licenses from the state of Connecticut will be a nonstarter to many people.

With Maryland ballot measures, voters do the unprecedented — twice

Wednesday, November 7, 2012
The Washington Post

By the time the polls closed Tuesday, Maryland voters had done something unprecedented — twice. They narrowly approved one ballot measure allowing same-sex marriage and gave broad approval to another that extends in-state college tuition rates to some illegal immigrants. No similar measures — in which majorities conferred rights on minorities — had ever been enacted by a public vote in any state. The fact that both happened on a single ballot not only revealed a lot about the electorate in deep-blue Maryland but also offered a glimpse of where the nation may be headed on some pivotal cultural issues.

800 gather at church to support Md. Dream Act

Friday, October 26, 2012
The Washington Post

Even though 800 people had gathered in a house of the Lord, the bishop made a request that usually would be out of line.  “This is going to be the one time in church you’ll be glad to have your cellphone,” Bishop Douglas Miles said as he encouraged members of the crowd to keep their cellphones on, although the reason why was not immediately clear.  The meeting at the Southern Asian Seventh-day Adventist Church in Silver Spring was as political as it was spiritual. A blend of faiths and ethnicities banded together two years ago to support Maryland’s Dream Act, which would allow certain undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition at state colleges. On Tuesday night, people gathered for a final get-out-the-vote rally in an effort to ensure that voters approve the measure in a referendum on Election Day.

Congregations work to pass the Dream Act

Friday, October 26, 2012
The Montgomery Gazette

Eight hundred people joined in prayer in a church in Silver Spring on Tuesday night, praying for the Dream Act. Many were leaders of churches and synagogues, all pledging to encourage their congregations, neighbors and friends to vote for Question 4. Possibly the most active part of a coalition that spans labor unions, the education community and a number of elected officials including Gov. Martin O’Malley, faith communities in Maryland have almost unanimously campaigned in favor of the law, which passed in 2011 and was brought to referendum by petition.

Maryland tuition law must be defended

Friday, August 5, 2011
The Baltimore Sun

Regarding the recent article about the lawsuit over the Maryland Dream Act ("Vote on tuition bill faces lawsuit," Aug. 2), I believe democracy should be upheld.

I was one of hundreds in attendance when the law was heavily debated in the State House. Over the last year,Maryland Industrial Areas Foundation has committed itself to true grassroots organizing and building a diverse base of African-American, Caribbean Americans, Latinos, and others who support the law. Our organizing culminated when we turned out a multitude of diverse supporters to witness the passage of the tuition bill in April. I'll never forget the rainbow of faces, both immigrant and American-born, unified on that day.

In Maryland, an immigration battle redux

Friday, July 22, 2011
LA Times

A new law allowing in-state college tuition for some illegal immigrants is suspended until it can go before voters next year. In the meantime, both sides build up huge campaigns to persuade the public.

Clergyman says immigration key to growth

Thursday, April 7, 2011
Boston Globe

Urging minority groups to unite and assert their influence on policy makers in Massachusetts and across the country, the head of a prominent interfaith group quoted Scripture and drew cheers at a State House rally yesterday.

“When William Bradford and the Mayflower pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock in 1620, they did not bring any immigration papers,’’ said the Rev. Hurmon Hamilton, president of the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization. “When John Winthrop arrived in 1630 with the next wave of New Englanders … they were not met with a wall built to keep them out...

Immigrant in-state tuition bill moves forward

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

ANNAPOLIS — A panel of Maryland senators is hoping a series of nighttime tweaks will help shepherd a plan to grant in-state tuition to illegal immigrants through the Senate.

The Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee voted Tuesday night to clean up the plan to grant illegal immigrants the same tuition rates at state-run universities that Maryland residents pay...

Senate to take up tuition break for undocumented students

Sunday, March 6, 2011
Baltimore Sun

Legislation would start students at community college

The state Senate is poised this week to take up a controversial plan to offer discounted tuition at Maryland's public colleges and universities to students who are in the country illegally.

The legislation, which cleared the Senate education committee last week, would allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition at any of Maryland's public community colleges. After completing two years of study, they could transfer to a four-year institution and continue to pay the in-state rate...