Building Upon Our WAISN Plate Collection – Advocacy in Olympia

January’s Social Justice Plate Collection benefited the Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN). Huge thanks to you: congregants donated over $3,800 in total! WAISN, a multi-racial, multi-lingual and multi-faith coalition, created in the wake of the 2016 election, is working together to uphold and defend the rights of all immigrants and refugees.

On February 5, Rev. Beth and five UUC congregants met with legislators at WAISN’s Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Day. All who attended described it as a powerful day–advocating with legislators to ensure our state is more welcoming and safer for everyone! WAISN’s educational programs helped all of us speak about several proposed bills and budget requests. Speakers from Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, One America, Casa Latina, Colectiva Legal, and Asian Counseling & Referral Services kicked off the morning. Then we broke into teams and met with legislators from our respective districts. Most were able to speak with three legislators and sit in on some of the legislative hearings.

Here is more info about two key items from our day in Olympia:

  • Keep Washington Working — A bill essential to keeping everyone safer, to keep local law enforcement agencies focused on their job, and ensure that state departments aren’t inappropriately sharing information with ICE, unless they have a warrant. Read a summary of WAISN talking points here; read the Senate bill digest here.
  • Census 2020 – A budget proposal to ensure all Washingtonians are counted in the next census. Everyone should be counted to ensure our state receives appropriate federal funding. But the anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies are creating such fear in immigrant communities that many are talking about not participating. California has set aside funds so that trusted immigrant-led organizations get the message out. Washington needs to do the same.

Through our solidarity and partnership with immigrant communities, we truly affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every person. If you want to learn more about getting involved with UUC’s Immigrant Justice work, or about ways you can support pro-immigrant policies, contact Rick.