Strengthening Sanctuary Alliance Vision Statement
Adopted May 22, 2017
Strengthening Sanctuary Alliance formed in December 2016 following the Olympia City Council’s resolution to declare Olympia a sanctuary city. Our mission is to support the principles of sanctuary cities and counties by working to enhance the safety, security and well being of the immigrant members of our community, regardless of their immigration status..
Among our goals and activities:
*Creating strong community presence to pressure law enforcement officials to minimize their cooperation with federal immigration authorities.
*Offering Know Your Rights workshops and emergency planning services.
*Networking with local faith groups to coordinate support and sanctuary initiatives.
*Developing strategies to respond to enforcement raids.
*Supporting the development of a safe and respectful culture in the schools.
*Building relationships with local and national immigrant rights organizations.
Who we are; what we believe:
Our group is open to all. We meet regularly to share information and coordinate our work. We work without hierarchies and with minimal structure. Leadership is a fluid, dynamic process that takes many forms. We appreciate the leadership of those who have played an organizing role by calling and facilitating meetings, taking notes, recruiting members, developing projects and participating in group activities. We anticipate that new members will show their leadership by responding to needs as they arise.
We represent a diversity of ethnicities, ages and faiths. Our shared commitment is to work for the safety and welfare of immigrant members of our communities, especially those who are undocumented. This is not an “immigrant problem,” it affects all of us. Those of us who have white skin privilege have a useful role to play as we enter into relationships of solidarity with our immigrant friends and neighbors in a national freedom struggle. It’s in everyone’s interest to create a more just culture; we all benefit from doing this work—and doing it together
We commit to keeping immigrant voices and leadership at the center of our work. We work closely with the CIELO Project of Olympia in order to collaborate and remain accountable to local immigrant communities. We also stay up-to-date with the national movement for immigrant justice.
We seek to empower ourselves and others by gaining and sharing information. We believe people are stronger when they know their rights and feel supported to speak back to those in power. Immigration officials rely on immigrants not knowing their rights in order to remove them from their families and communities. Among the values we hold are: respect for persons; acknowledgment of the dignity of everyone; and support for families. These are values held by the immigrant communities we serve. We understand that immigrants’ stories of aspiration and struggle are being silenced in the current political climate. We commit ourselves to learn their inspiring stories in order to challenge the demeaning stereotypes disseminated by the federal government.
We seek relationships with all movements working for social justice. The Trump administration has chosen to treat all undocumented immigrants as criminals. We support the struggles of all who are criminalized, especially people of color, the poor and LGBTQI+ people who have experienced discrimination, harassment and police violence.