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The Sanctuary Movement in the US - Cambridge Migration Society & Pembroke Refugee & Migrant Seminar

When Feb 04, 2019
from 07:00 PM to 09:30 PM
Where The Old Library, Pembroke College, Cambridge
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The Cambridge Migration Society and Pembroke Refugee & Migrant Seminar present a seminar on the topic of sanctuary in the US, featuring members of sanctuaries in New York.

Following the recent and increasingly aggressive anti-immigration policies in the United States, many houses of worships and their communities have opened their doors to offer physical sanctuary to migrants in danger of deportation. The sanctuary movement, however, has a longer history in the struggle for migrant rights in the United States, going back to the 1980s when thousands of Central Americans sought refuge escaping US sanctioned civil wars in the region.

With leading community organizers from New York, we will be discussing the current state of the movement, its history, its political implications beyond issues of migration, and the profound critical potentialities against the nation-state paradigms under neoliberal regimes.

Speakers (joining via Skype from New York):
AURA HERNANDEZ, born in Guatemala, was ordered to report to ICE on March for removal. That same month she sought physical sanctuary at The Fourth Universalist Society in the City of New York on the Upper Westside where she is currently residing. She has been a major leader in the movement and in the struggle for social justice while in physical sanctuary.

REV. JUAN CARLOS RUIZ, born in Cerritos, San Luis Potosi, Mexico, is a pastor at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Bay Ridge Brooklyn. He is the co-founder of New Sanctuary Coalition and has been a leading figure and organizer of the sanctuary movement in the United States. Formerly a Catholic priest, he was inspired by Liberation Theology to join the Catholic Workers’ Movement. He has been directly involved as a community organizer in a plethora of movements seeking social justice ever since.

MATT BLOCH is a doctoral candidate in Sociology at the Graduate Center in New York. He is also the director of the Center for Sanctuary Studies at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He has worked as a community organizer and has helped develop community-based networks connecting houses of worship that serve as physical sanctuary spaces in New York City.

Moderator: Diego Azurdia (PhD candidate, Spanish, Cambridge)

Photo by Cinthia Santos-Briones

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