Thursday, December 30, 2010

NNIR; Immigration in the next year

As a memorable 2010 comes to a close, we ask for your support of NNIRR. Giving an end-of-the year donation takes only a few minutes, and your contribution will help us to continue the fight for immigrant rights and justice. Please contribute as much as you can.
We're sure you've seen the news -- the Republicans and anti-immigrant proponents are promising to squash any proposals for genuine immigration reforms, while drumming up more anxieties through their hateful and misguided proposals like Arizona's SB 1070.Among their plans is a challenge to the 14th amendment, which ensures citizenship of those born in the U.S., including the children of undocumented immigrants. And with the 2012 general election on the horizon, anti-immigrant posturing will likely storm ahead.
So we will have a lot to do -- all of us -- to stop the further deterioration of rights and continue the fight for the well-being and safety of all immigrants and their families.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Global Poverty Doubled- U.N. Report

By Agence France-Presse

November 26,
2010 "AFP" - -GENEVA — The number of very poor countries has doubled in the last 30 to 40 years, while the number of people living in extreme poverty has also grown two-fold, a UN think-tank warned Thursday.

In its annual report on the 49 least developed countries (LDCs) in the world, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) said that the model of development that has prevailed to date for these countries has failed and should be re-assessed.

"The traditional models that have been applied to LDCs that tend to move the LDCs in the direction of trade-related growth seem not to have done very well," said Supachai Panitchpakdi, secretary general of UNCTAD.

"What happened is that in the past 30-40 years, the number of LDCs have doubled so it has actually deteriorated, the number of people living under the poverty line has doubled from the 1980s."

The report indicated that the situation has sharply deteriorated in the past few years.

GENEVA — The number of very poor countries has doubled in the last 30 to 40 years, while the number of people living in extreme poverty has also grown two-fold, a UN think-tank warned Thursday.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Administration to endorse U.N. Treaty on Rights of Indigenous People

The outrage began after the President announcedon December 16 that the U.S. would reverse course and support the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People. The Declaration was adopted by the U.N. General Assembly in 2007, but the U.S., under President Bush, opposed it.
"The aspirations it affirms -- including the respect for the institutions and rich cultures of Native peoples -- are ones we must always seek to fulfill," the President said of the Declaration at White House Tribal Nations Conference where he announced the reversal. He went on to describe efforts to improve health care, education, and unemployment rates in tribal areas.
"While the declaration is not legally binding, it carries considerable moral and political force," the State Department wrote of the Declaration, "and complements the President's ongoing efforts to address historical inequities faced by indigenous communities in the United States."
Despite this, the right has seized onto some of the language to attack the President -- including Article 26, which says:
1. Indigenous peoples have the right to the lands, territories and resources which they have traditionally owned, occupied or otherwise used or acquired.
2. Indigenous peoples have the right to own, use, develop and control the lands, territories and resources that they possess by reason of traditional ownership or other traditional occupation or use, as well as those which they have otherwise acquired.
3. States shall give legal recognition and protection to these lands, territories and resources. Such recognition shall be conducted with due respect to the customs, traditions and land tenure systems of the indigenous peoples concerned.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

International Migrants Day

Continue the Dream, Fight for Justice for All Migrants

Celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Convention on Migrant Workers

On December 18, International Migrants Day, the National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights recognizes the sacrifice and desire of migrants worldwide to seek a safe and healthy life for themselves and their families. We also recognize their untold suffering due to unfair, discriminatory and abusive governmental policies and actions, and recommit with them to fight for recognition of their human rights, redress and justice.
In a report we released yesterday, Injustice for All: The Rise of the Immigration Policing Regime, we call attention to the growth of a restrictive and often abusive system of immigration control that has matured in the US in the last decade. This system includes laws, policies and infrastructure that disregards immigrants’ rights and human dignity; such a system provides little or no hope for those who seek nothing more than a fair chance at a decent life. (Haga clic aquí para leer el informe, Injusticia para todas y todos.)
On this 20th anniversary of the United Nations Convention for the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (Migrant Workers Convention), we call on the United States government to recognize, ratify and implementthis important Convention.

Monday, December 13, 2010

David Bacon; Rethinking Immigration

David Bacon: "Rethinking Immigration."

Please note location: Our lectures are held at the Sol Collective, 2574 21st Street, Sacramento, CA (1 blk south of Broadway).
Bacon is a photojournalist based in the Bay Area, who has devoted his career to chronicling the conditions, history and struggles of immigrant workers.
See more at
Thursday, Dec.16.  7 PM. 

Indigenous Organizations reject Cancun "agreement"

Peasant, Indigenous Organizations Reject Market Schemes for Global Warming
By Laura Carlsen
The UN Climate Conference (COP16) in Cancun is turning out to be both anti-climactic and anti-climatic.Negotiators have given up on a binding agreement to limit emissions of greenhouse gases. Instead, they are seeking to expand schemes to allow contaminating industries and nations to continue with business as usual and add another lucrative area to their portfolios–trade in carbon offsets and credits.
These include market-based incentives like the UN Reduction of Emissions for Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) proposal and the Clean Development Mechanisms (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol. Both allow developed-country polluters to use peasant and indigenous lands and projects in developing countries to offset continued pollution. In the bargain, not only do polluters avoid having to reduce emissions, but the land-management contracts that verify offsets typically strip traditional communities of their rights over the carbon-absorbing lands they have preserved for millennia.

The Americas Program.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Dolores Huerta letter on Dream Act

The following is Dolores Huerta's open letter to Arizona's Senator John McCain:
Dear Senator McCain:
You stood shoulder to shoulder with me and Cesar Chavez’s family at the
unveiling of the official commemorative postal stamp in honor of Cesar Chavez.
We need you to live up to the legacy of justice you represented in that press
conference. Vote to bring the DREAM Act to the Senate floor, and vote to pass
DREAM Act into law.
Seventy percent of the people in the United States support the DREAM ACT. Do
the will of the American public. As Cesar Chavez often said, “It Can Be Done.” .
Throughout your distinguished career, Senator, you have continually identified
with the legacy of Cesar Chavez, a native son of your own state of Arizona.
As sponsor and chief spokesperson for SB164 the “Cesar Estrada Chavez Study
Act” for the past decade. You invoked Cesar Chavez’s passions for justice and
education as if they were your own. You continuously identified with his legacy.
You said:
“Mr. Chavez’s legacy is an inspiration to us all and he will be
remembered for helping Americans to transcend distinctions of
experience and share equally in the rights and responsibilities of
freedom. It is important that we honor his struggle...”“Cesar Chavez, an Arizonan born in Yuma, was the son of migrant
farm workers.... His efforts on behalf of some of the most
oppressed individuals in our society are an inspiration, and through
his work he made America a bigger and better nation.
And quoted Cesar’s words:
“We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and
prosperity for our community... our ambitions must be broad enough to
include the aspirations and needs of others, for their sakes and for our
The young DREAM Act students with whom I am fasting believe that you can
once again stand tall with independence and conviction, and that you will
continue Cesar Chavez’s legacy by bringing justice to the DREAM students.
The benefits of this bill for our country are great. There will be educated
professionals contributing to the American economy. They will bring in billions
of revenue from taxes and will help us create jobs. The Congressional Budget
Office reports that DREAM Act students would help cut the federal deficit by
$1.4 billion over 10 years and would generate $2.4 billion in revenue. A UCLA
study estimated this revenue number would be $3.6 trillion over a forty year span.
For children whose only home has been the United States and never committed a
crime, you can offer your hand so they can contribute their talents to our society.
They are students—Dream Act students—with a passion for the service of others
and this great country. You must not turn your back on them.
Senator McCain, you are aware of this hunger and this passion, because you are a
father who cares about providing opportunity for your children. You are a
decorated veteran who cares about protecting our country. You are a
distinguished leader in the U.S. Senate who cares deeply about the future of our
The fasting DREAM Act students (Dulce Juarez and Celso Mireles, as well as the
mother of a DREAM Act student Rosa Marta Soto) outside your office are hungry
for knowledge and eager for the opportunities to learn and to serve our great
country. But they are not alone. Joining them in this fast and in this fight for
justice are students from Illinois, California, Washington, D.C., Texas, Georgia,
Iowa, Florida and New York. They are looking to you for leadership, Senator.
With your past support of the DREAM Act, you have shown this leadership.
They need you now.
You are in a unique position to make the difference and bring justice for these
students by exerting your leadership in the Senate. Please continue your
commitment to honor Cesar Chavez’s legacy by voting YES for the DREAM Act.
¡Sí Se Puede!
Dolores Huerta
Dolores Huerta Foundation

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Leisa Faulkner aid work in Haiti

Aid worker from Cameron Park undeterred


Rioting didn't stop Leisa Faulkner from her mission of delivering antibiotics to a Port-au-Prince orphanage Wednesday.
It simply took longer and required detours around angry mobs and burning barricades of tires and rubble – and the help of a card emblazoned with a red cross.
"We never fail, like the Pony Express," said an exhausted Faulkner by phone from Port-au-Prince.
Faulkner, 56, of Cameron Park arrived in Haiti Monday to spend the week delivering medical supplies and cholera-fighting medications to free clinics and children's homes.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

House passes Dream Act

Last night, the House of Representatives voted to pass the DREAM Act. It was a big victory, but now we keep up the fight to get it passed in the Senate[1].

The DREAM Act is just one step away from becoming a reality, but we must keep pushing. Call your Senator now and ask them to vote YES on the DREAM Act.

Dial 866-996-5161 or click here to call your Senator.
The Senate is expected Thursday to vote on whether to advance similar legislation, but it's unlikely Democrats can muster the 60 votes needed to advance it past opposition by Republicans and a handful of their own members.
"It's an uphill struggle," Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Democrat, acknowledged.
The Senate was unable to block a Republican fillabuster.  The vote was put off for the future.

Please stop what you're doing and call your  Senators as soon as possible and ask them to support the DREAM Act.
U.S. Senate:  202-224-3121

Debate on the measure was fraught with politics. Obama has made an intense public push in recent days in favor of the measure, eager to demonstrate his commitment to Hispanic voters, a key voting bloc that's been alienated by his failure to push broader immigration legislation.
With the GOP taking control of the House and representing a stronger minority in the Senate next year, failure to enact the legislation by year's end dims the prospects for action by Congress to grant a path toward legalization for the nation's millions of undocumented immigrants.

Demand Mexican Government protection of travelers


Sacramento California -December 7, 2010

Migrant ,Labor, students Organizations from Northern California will hold a press Conference at the Sacramento Mexican Consulate’s offices to protest and demand safe passage of those Mexican Migrant families traveling to Mexico to visit their families, in their home states during the Christmas holidays. 

At the same time representatives of Migrant organizations will demand the resignation of Mexican Consul General Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez, for having to fail in responding to numerous complaints of Migrants who have been Victims of violent attacks, Robberies ,that were presented to the Mexican Consul General Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez ,“Almost a year ago we submitted actual documents to the Consul General Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez, but he ignored our complaints, he failed to respond to our complaints, nor did we ever receive a written response neither the Mexican Consul nor the Mexican Gov’t. ”, according to Luis Magaña, Rep. of the California Agricultural Migrant Workers organization.

Luis Magaña further stated, “maybe many of these Migrants tragic deaths and those injured could have been avoided, like in the case of a young child who was shot and wounded recently, but the Consul failed to act, because of his failure to act in behalf of the Migrants safety and well being, these incidents may have never happened, it is for these reasons that we now Demand the Mexican Federal Government recall him back to Mexico for his having failed to act responsibly”.

Dream Act up for a vote today

Dream Act in Congress Today

The House is set to consider the DREAM Act (HR 6497) today. In the afternoon, the Senate is expected to vote on a cloture motion (to end debate and an anticipated filibuster on the bill) in order to bring it to the floor for a vote.
We urge you to call your congressional representatives NOW to ask for their support of an improved DREAM. Click to get the contact info for yourRepresentative and Senators. They need to hear from you.
As you may know, this legislation – the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act -- could provide access to legalization to tens of thousands of undocumented immigrant students.
The Dream Act is still following a rocky path. Conservative policy makers are  threatening to add increased border enforcement amendments to it.
This week's consideration of DREAM follows a report from the Congressional Budget Office, which last week provided a cost estimate of S. 3992, the latest Senate version of the DREAM Act. According to the report, an increase in authorized workers over 10 years could generate $2.3 billion in various tax revenues and reduce the budget deficit by some $1.4 billion between 2011 and 2020. This should be reason enough to expand the DREAM Act.
Please join us in calling your representatives to support DREAM -- and urge them to bring DREAM to more youth and students by including access and options to community service, as well as educational opportunities and job training.
Take a few minutes to call (202) 224-3121 to connect to your representatives’ offices and ask that they support and improve the DREAM Act.
Tens of thousands of young immigrants -- "undocumented and unafraid" -- and their supporters have rallied to support DREAM. Let’s send a message to Congress that we stand on the side of justice and in support of immigrant youth and students, for their future and that of their families.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Sacramento Demonstration for the Dream Act-Dec 2.

Demonstration at the California Capitol today, Dec.2.2010.

The goal of the demonstration  is to bring to light the thousands of students caught in the horrible, perpetual limbo of being educated, bright and ready to work, but denied the chance to because of their illegal immigration status.

The DREAM Act would give more than 100,000 young immigrants, brought to the United States before the age of 16, a chance to become legal residents if they attend college or join the military. 

Many of us have known or do know Californians that have had to live in hiding. 

The DREAM Act is bipartisan legislation that would provide undocumented young women and men who were brought to the U.S. as young children a pathway to U.S. citizenship.  See Just the Facts: Five Things You Should Know About the DREAM Act or check out NILC’s website at for more information.

Haiti Journal

I should have spent Thanksgiving in Haiti this year. Instead, because of some unavoidable document work, I will be leaving this Saturday for about the saddest place in this half of the world.

This disease is gaining momentum. It is now projected to infect 400,000 people, half of those in the first three months (or by the end of January). Cases have already jumped to over 72,000 and confirmed dead now stands at 1,648. More than one thousand people are hospitalized every day and more than 50 people are now dying each and every day from this disease that wealthier countries no longer consider a threat. 

Today are the presidential elections. There are people marching in the streets...lamenting the lack of a fair election, clean water, sanitation...asking for the keeping of promises. For example, only a minor fraction of earthquake relief funds promised by foreign countries, including the US, has arrived.

And now, although thousands more are likely to die from this cholera epidemic, aid workers are cancelling travel to Haiti. Many aid workers there are simply going home. Children's Hope is doing neither. We will leave to return to Haiti this Saturday for our 6th humanitarian relief trip this year.