Community Vigil for Detained Arcata Resident

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Grassroots leaders of the True North Organizing Network invite community members to attend a vigil for Claudia Portillo, an Arcata resident and mother of four who was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) two weeks ago in San Francisco. Join Claudia’s family and community on Tuesday, November 28, 2017 from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. on the Arcata Plaza to show her that she is not alone.

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Claudia has spent the last two weeks in the Contra Costa West County Detention Center, which, according to the San Francisco Chronicle article Lost Coast Outpost referenced in its recent story is known for its harsh conditions. Her sister, Jenny Ventura, recently gave testimony of Claudia’s story at the Unity Action on Immigration at the Eureka First United Methodist Church on September 11, 2017, speaking to many undocumented families’ fears of deportation.  

“My sister, a hard working woman with four beautiful daughters is now faced with those same feelings. In a couple of weeks she has an appointment with Immigration in San Francisco... and to be honest, we don’t know what’s going to happen there. We don’t know if she’s going to walk out of that building with us to be in the car on the drive back home. Right now the fear is that they’ll be sending her back to a country filled with crime. The very same country that my mother tried saving her from. This is all due to the fact that she lost her privilege of having a work permit because she missed a signature, one signature on a form. That’s how broken our system is when it comes to Immigration.”

That fear became reality two weeks ago when Claudia was detained by ICE and sent to the Contra Costa West County Detention Facility. Inmates in this detention center “are locked up for 23 hours before they can leave their cells, which hold one or two inmates.” True North Organizing Network leaders, staff, faith/spiritual leaders and clergy believe that when we stand up for the dignity and rights of a person or particular group of people, we stand up for the dignity and rights of all people. Join us on the Arcata Plaza this Tuesday evening from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. to show support with words, song, and prayer.

If you can provide financial support to the family, GoFundMe campaign “Claudia’s Deportation Defense” will help raise funds for travel to the Bay Area and for Claudia’s legal fees. The goal is to raise $7,000 initially, and to potentially raise more if an immigration judge grants Claudia a bond hearing.

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#No1StandsAlone

Press Contact:
Brenda Urueta, Humboldt Coastal Organizer
(707) 318-0188, brendau@truenorthorganizing.org

True North Organizing Network Calls on Humboldt County to become a “Welcoming County” and commit to Social/Racial Equity

(Eureka, CA)  Our North Coast communities are changing. Migration and rapid demographic shifts and the economic struggles that many of our neighbors face are causing tension and creating new challenges, for newcomers and long-time residents alike.

Immigrants and people of color seek their place in the community with safety from harassment and discrimination, Tribal and Indigenous people seek a return of their right to self-determination and sovereignty and the rural White working class is seeking their own equity and experiencing an unprecedented spike in what’s been labeled as the: ”Deaths of Despair”.  As we move forward into the future, the strongest communities will be ones where all people can take part in economic, civic, and social life. These communities will be able to go beyond fear and even tolerance to a bright future for all of our people. Now is the time for bold leadership and action from our County Board of Supervisors.

True North Organizing Network calls on the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors to lead the way in creating this bright future by taking two concrete actions--(1) Pass a “Welcoming County Resolution” based upon the Welcoming America model; and (2) Pass and implement a Social and Racial Equity Resolution based upon the City of Seattle’s, Resolution 31577.  

Passing and implementing these two resolutions will give a clear and unambiguous message to our diverse community that our Humboldt County Board of Supervisors is committed to an inclusive future for all and a framework for our community to come together in order to create. Working together to make our county more welcoming  with social/racial equity will lower tensions and make us stronger and more resilient in the face of change and challenge.

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True North Organizing Network Statement on: Racism, White Supremacy, White Nationalism and the racially motivated violence in Charlottesville, Virginia

In the wake of the racially motivated violence in Charlottesville, Virginia on Saturday,  True North Organizing Network issues the following statement:

True North Organizing Network unequivocally rejects racism, white supremacy and white nationalism. We condemn the use of violence by Unite the Right and other white supremacist organizations and individuals. Our hearts go out to the victims of that violence.

We reject the conclusion that there is a moral equivalency between the racist violence on graphic display in Charlottesville on Saturday, and the actions of people defending human dignity by standing up to hate groups. Racism, white supremacy and white nationalism needs to be called out when it’s present, and not denied or rationalized by politically correct language. We must not allow those that profit from racism to obscure or deny it.

As we collectively denounce racist, white supremacist and white nationalist rhetoric, True North Organizing Network calls on our brothers and sisters of goodwill of all ethnicities to refuse to allow neo-nazis, the Ku Klux Klan, and other avowed racists to spread messages of hate. We invite our brothers and sisters in Humboldt and Del Norte Counties to join our network and create a place where life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are available to everyone.