‘”Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Here’s a great opportunity to reach out from the safety of your own home. Write letters of support to women and children held in detention at the Southwest border. This is a “can-do” project you and your friends – even small children – may be happy to do.
The Proyecto Dilley, a partner of the Immigration Justice Campaign in San Antonio, TX, serves immigrant mothers and children seeking asylum who are detained at the South Texas Family Residential Center in Dilley, TX. Fifty three families detained in Dilley have been there for over 100 days. 35 of those have been there for over 300 days! They have waited out 3-10 months of depression, medical neglect, reheated food, nonexistent education, and the anxiety of an uncertain future, all just hoping for the chance to be safe in the United States. They have had to sue for their rights to a fair asylum process.
They are now watching guards come in to work after a weekend at the bars in one of the states hardest-hit by COVID-19, and then leave their masks off and hug the detained children. They have seen judge after judge decide they can’t force ICE to release them. They are now preparing themselves to be asked if they want to send their children alone to sponsors, or keep them detained in a congregate setting where their growth has stunted, development has been repressed, and behavior has regressed– and where Coronavirus is slowly but surely spreading among the staff.
These 53 families have no idea what future is in store for them. They would love to hear from people all over the country who are supporting them and rooting for them. That’s why we’re renewing our call for letters of encouragement for our detained families. Children are also welcome to send drawings. Unfortunately, due to rules, we cannot pass out any food or gifts of any kind, even stickers. Subject of the letters may include:
-your belief that they deserve justice
– your best wishes/prayers/blessings and encouragement to fight for their families
-your thanks to them for having the courage to seek asylum despite all the road blocks and bad treatment.
Please mail letters to: Mackenzie Levy, in care of Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid , 1111 N. Main Ave, San Antonio TX 78212.
Put each letter in it’s own stamped but not yet addressed envelope. Place all envelopes into one larger package to send together. Mackenzie will collect all the letters, address the envelopes, and mail them individually to each family. Don’t forget the stamp on each envelope or make a check out to Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid to cover cost of mailing your letter.
The vast majority of the families speak Spanish; one family that speaks Haitian Creole and another Portuguese.
Gracias! Mèsi! Obrigado!