Last week the No Papers, No Fear Ride for Justice took off for a six week tour of the South. They are stopping in local communities to share challenges undocumented immigrants face and are organizing actions that confronts fear and builds community. Colorado Jobs with Justice, along with many other organizations, welcome the riders on their first stop in Denver. For two days, riders and local community leaders shared stories, engaged in strategy sessions and shared laughter over meals.
Coloradans face their own "show me your papers" SB90 which has been in effect since 2006. SB90 has kept communities under attack and has added more family and friends into ICE's deportation dragnet. Local leaders shared stories of courage, their commitment to organizing, and the need to overturn SB90 at a rally on the capitol steps.
"When we are made fearful and divided, whether it is in the workplace or in the community, that is when we become vulnerable to exploitation." Said Joe Thomas of Colorado Jobs with Justice, "But when are organize we shed our fears and become powerful."
This week the riders are in New Orleans meeting with day laborers, civil rights leaders, and to support the Southern 32 in their effort to stop their deportation. The Southern 32 is a group of immigrant labor organizers and civil rights defenders currently in deportation proceedings for having the courage to stand up for their rights and is another demonstration that we are stronger when we are organized. Another great example of the courage power that comes from organizing for dignity and respect. The riders take with them the strength, encouragement, and the stories of the lives they are now connected to all the way their last stop, Charlotte, North Carolina. Adelante!