The Unique Role of Citizen Volunteers in the New Sanctuary Movement and Immigrant Justice

Host/Sponsor: 
Dena Fisher
Room: 
Timeslot: 
Abstract: 
The New Sanctuary Coalition of NYC is an interfaith network of congregations, organizations, and individuals standing in solidarity with communities resisting detention and deportation with the goal of keeping families together. It recognizes that unjust global and systematic economic relationships and racism form the basis of the profound injustices that affect immigrants and seeks reform of United States immigration laws and practices to promote fairness, social and economic justice. Citizen volunteers play a unique role in helping to prevent detention and deportation related to issues of seeking asylum, applying for legal status, providing support and thereby preventing breakup of families due to harsh, inconsistent and punitive actions by the U.S. government and its agents. U.S. citizens play a critically important role in this movement. U.S. citizens will learn specific actions and measures they can take to assure that human and civil rights are maintained for individuals, families and the immigrant community in general and help welcome immigrants facing injustice here and abroad.
Panel Track: 
Immigration and Social Justice
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker First Name: 
Dena
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Last Name: 
Fisher
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Affiliation: 
New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Biography: 
Dena provides administrative coordination for NSC and works with the team in its its office, asylum clinic, accompaniment program and social justice outreach programs. She has worked with solidarity projects in Central America and the Middle East. She holds an M.S.W. from New York University and a Ph.D. in social policy from Brandeis University.
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator First Name: 
Ross
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Last Name: 
Upshaw
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Affiliation: 
Bethany Baptist Church, Newark, NJ and New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Biography: 
Ross is a graduate of New York Theological Seminary and is a licensed minister and ordained deacon. He co-chaired the New York State Supreme Court Anti-Bias Committee that includes programs such as the annual Martin Luther King, Jr., Programs, Women's Month Programs, LGBTQ Programs, among others. He has been associated with the Judson Memorial Church ministry since 2015 and presently serves as Executive Assistant to Ravi Ragbir, Executive Director of NSC, to expand "sanctuary congregations" in NYC, Long Island, NJ, and other areas.
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator First Name: 
Nathan
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Last Name: 
Yaffe
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Affiliation: 
N.Y.U. Law School Graduate
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Biography: 
Nathan is a 2017 NYU Law School graduate who provides direct logistic services in the NSC Asylum Clinic helping with individuals and families seeking assistance and providing backup support to pro bono lawyer consultants. He serves as a legal intern at the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti, NYC. He co-founded and served on the Board of Haiti Justice Alliance,Northfield, MN and worked at the Labor Arbitration Institute in Minneapolis, MN.
Panel/Workshop Organizer First Name: 
Dena
Panel/Workshop Organizer Last Name: 
Fisher
Panel/Workshop Organizer Affiliation: 
New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City
 

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