Media Advisory            Tuesday, November 15th

Contact: Mohammad Abdollahi  | Cell: 734.262.9705

Email: mo@dreamactivist.org

Contact: Dayanna Rebolledo | Cell: 313.319.5524

 

Historical Civil Disobedience in Montgomery, Alabama:

Undocumented Parents, 55, 39, 30 and 25 Risk Arrest

Four parents join dozens of undocumented youth in demanding HB56 author—State Senator Beason— stop the hate

 

***Watch Live at 3:00pm EST – http://bit.ly/livealundoc ***

MONTGOMERY, Ala.— 12 undocumented immigrants participate in an act of civil disobedience today in front of the Alabama State Capitol. They will publicly declare their undocumented status in defiance of HB 56, which is considered to be the harshest anti-immigrant bill in the country.

“We want to remind the immigrants of this state that they have a voice and it’s time to use it,” said Belen Rebelledo, an undocumented mother of three.  “We are here to stop Alabama from once again trying to turn the power of the state against those who live in it.”

Participants for today’s event have come together from all over the country to stand in solidarity with the community in Alabama. “What happens to one of us affects all of us regardless of where we live” said Alma Diaz, an undocumented immigrant who arrived in the U.S. at the age of 22.  Now 30 Alma fights for her community and is taking this risk, knowing she could be arrested and deported, because doing nothing is no longer an option. “What has hiding in the shadows gotten us? We must fight back; it is the only way to end the pain we see in our communities.”

When:       November 15th at 2:00pm: Alabama House of Reps

11 South Union Street, Montgomery, AL 36130-2102

What:  Undocumented parents and youth deliver a letter to state legislators demanding a change in anti-immigrant rhetoric and wait for response.

Where:  In front of Alabama State Legislature.

Who:  Martin Unzueta, 55; Belen Rebelledo, 39; Alma Diaz, 30; Jaime Guzman, 25, of Portland, OR; Catalina Rios, 19, of Detroit, MI; Ernesto Zumaya, 25, of Los Angeles, CA;  Myasha Arellano, 18, of San Fernando Valley, CA; Krsna Avila, 23, of Oakland, CA; Fernanda Marroquin, 22, of Philadelphia, PA; Cesar Marroquin, 21, of Philadelphia, PA; and Cynthia Perez, 27, of Indianapolis, IN.

Martin Unzueta, an undocumented immigrant living in the U.S. for the past 17 years is taking action to confront the lies; “The Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement lie because they are hurting our communities with their actions. We are doing civil disobedience because we are not afraid of confronting those who lie.”

Jaime Limon-Guzman, an undocumented parent from Oregon is in Alabama to protect his family; “At 12, my parents brought me to the U.S.to give me a better life.  I worry everyday for my 2 year old daughter, I am now taking the same risk my parents took to give her a better and more secure future.

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The Alabama Youth Collective is an undocumented youth-led organization working to better the lives of immigrants in the state of Alabama.  The Youth Collective firmly believes in the principles of non-violent direct action.

 

Profile of parents participating in today’s civil disobedience

Belen Rico came to the U.S. 11 years ago to provide her children with a more promising future. Now 39 years old and a mother of three, she works multiple jobs in order to provide for her family. After spending time with immigrant communities inAlabama, she has witnessed first-hand how HB 56 is tearing families apart. Recognizing that she cannot sit by inDetroit while such injustice is happening inBirmingham, Belen feels that the time has come to take a stand. In her words, “As parents, we need to come out of the shadows and walk side by side with our children. We need to stand united so that our message can be strong and clear: we will no longer remain silent.”

Martin Unzueta has been in the United States for 17 years. A resident of Chicago,Illinois, the 55 year-old has been a long-time community organizer and now advocates for the rights of workers at the Chicago Community and Workers’ Rights Center. Martin refuses to stay silent while 1,100 people are deported every day. He recognizes that the majority of them are victims of Secure Communities, which criminalizes the families and workers like him who form the backbone of this society. He is taking this risk because he is tired of seeing his children suffer and is tired of the lies of ICE. Martin is fighting back because he will not be afraid of those who lie to entire communities under the guise of freedom.

Alma Diaz has lived in America for almost a decade. From Cincinnati,Ohio, she has worked hard to achieve the elusive American Dream. At 30 years old,Alma is a wife and mother, a student at Cincinnati State Community College, where she studies Business Management, and a community volunteer at the Cincinnati Interfaith Workers Center, where she educates her fellow community members about their rights and fights to minimize wage theft. She has demonstrated, through her actions, her value of service to the community and of education. With these same values in mind,Alma is taking action in Alabama. She hopes to empower other undocumented immigrants to come out of the shadows and take a stand, in order to keep their families together and hold America accountable to its own values.

Jaime Limon-Guzman came to the United States at age 12 from Mexico. Jaime currently works as an organizer and mentor in his community in Oregon. As a young parent of a 2 year old, He fears he will be separated from his daughter due to his immigration status. Jaime decided to risk deportation by sharing his story in Alabama in hopes to put an end to law that dehumanizes his community.

 

Remaining profiles will be loaded on www.dreamactivist.org    |    @dreamact

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