November 23, 2016

An Open Letter from the MinKwon Center

Dear Friends, Allies and Community,

For decades, the MinKwon Center has fought for those oppressed and marginalized in society. Today, our mission to empower our community takes on an unprecedented urgency. Mr. Trump fueled his candidacy using hate – making targets of immigrants, people of color, women, Muslims, LGBTQ, and other marginalized groups. Since his election, we have heard him reaffirm his intention to deport or imprison millions of immigrants and seen him appoint a known white supremacist to his inner circle of advisers. Meanwhile, across the nation, there have been hundreds of reported incidents of harassment, vandalism and threats against immigrants and minorities.

One of the most severe repercussions of the election is the imminent loss of DACA. At MinKwon alone, we have assisted over 700 individuals in applying, and 742,000 across the US are in this protected status. Mr. Trump pledged to eliminate every single one of President Obama’s executive actions and orders, including DACA.

If this happens, DACA recipients will lose their ability to work, not to mention their protection from deportation. Also alarming is the fact that their application process has revealed their identity to the federal government. Even if they are not targeted for deportation by ICE, without work authorization they may be forced into the underground economy, taking on what is likely lower-paying jobs for cash wages.

MinKwon is responding in several ways:

* Legal services and consultation for immigrants regarding their status will continue. If you are undocumented, contact us immediately to see if you are eligible for a visa or other form of relief. This includes anyone currently with DACA.

* DACA recipients with expirations in the next 6 months should contact us immediately, to process a renewal. We have begun offering additional clinic days to process these applications.

* We are preparing know-your-rights workshops on protecting yourself when approached by immigration enforcement officials.

* The Asian American Dreamers Collective, our undocumented young adult group, is convening special meetings and events for Dreamers to share a space of grief, pain and to respond together.

* MinKwon is strategizing with our allies in the non-profit, government and philanthropic world on how to respond to a federal government hostile to immigrants in a way not seen in generations

We are here to help, assist and empower the community. As an organization committed to immigrants, the MinKwon Center is renewed in its sense of mission to serve the urgent needs of the vulnerable, and to give a voice to the undocumented, low-income, limited English proficient, and Asian Americans who are now at even greater risk.

This is not a time to stay silent, nor to accept what is happening to our family members, friends, neighbors, or co-workers. It is a time for action, and we invite you to join us.
 


Media Contact

Contact us if you have questions, need assistance or would like to volunteer. Our number is 718-460-5600. And you can contact James Hong at james.hong@minkwon.org


 

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