We’ve Been Waiting and We Are Ready
National immigrant advocacy coalition kicks off campaign for to help immigrants navigate naturalization and other large-scale processes
Recording available here
NATIONWIDE – On July 13, a group of 18 national organizations with reach across all 50 states launched the Ready To Stay campaign, a national effort to help immigrants navigate and access legal services.
For the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States, there are already various forms of temporary protections and very limited paths to citizenship, including Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for certain countries, and the Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness (LRIF) program.
With Congress and the White House working towards large-scale citizenship and legalization measures, this campaign is creating the infrastructure to help millions gain protection and enroll in programs that will lead to eventual citizenship.
The launch kicks off a series of events to inform impacted community members on how to navigate immigration programs and increase the legal capacities of immigrant-serving organizations across the country.
“The Ready to stay coalition has high expectations that Congress and the Biden Administration will finally deliver a pathway to citizenship for the 10.5 million undocumented immigrants that have lived and worked in this country, their home. With these high expectations and the hopes and dreams of our grassroots leaders in mind, we embark in an unprecedented effort to be ready and build the community education and legal services infrastructure needed to deliver on any mass scale legalization effort,” said Angelica Salas, executive director of Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA) and Ready to Stay co-chair.
“As Catholics, we believe protecting the dignity of the human person is fundamental in a moral society. The Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. and our network of more than 400 affiliates in 49 states embrace the future legalization program that Congress will enact, and stand ready to help immigrants obtain their dream of full legal residency, U.S. citizenship, and a permanent place in their permanent home, the United States of America,” added Anna Gallagher, executive director of The Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC)
“We need permanent protections for our communities and our families. I have DACA, a temporary protection status. But it is not enough! I cannot stay quiet knowing that my parents are always under threat of deportation. We must push for legislation that protects the people that call this country their home! And most importantly, we need a system of implementation that will allow people to apply!” said Cirenio Cervantes, Faith in Action, congregation organizer with Faith In Florida
“I am proud that the Center for Migration Studies is part of the Ready to Stay Coalition and will support professional, trusted, and effective legal support to immigrant communities through the use of its data and its expertise as a think tank. As a DACA recipient and the Center for Migration Studies’ Director of Programs, I can attest to the importance of the much-needed work that non-profit legal service providers offer.” said Daniela Alulema, director of programs, Center for Migration Studies
“In the age of mass disinformation, it’s important for vulnerable immigrant communities to have access to a trusted resource for the latest on immigrant reform and how to best prepare for potential changes to immigration law. The Immigration Advocates Network is proud to have helped create ReadytoStay.org to provide immigrants and their advocates with reliable information from a coalition of national non-profit legal service providers as well as access to our national legal services directory with information on local accredited immigration legal service providers,” said Rodrigo Camarena, director of the Immigration Advocates Network.
Ready to Stay is a national campaign working to build field capacities and coordination for the effective implementation of a large-scale immigration reform, citizenship and legalization programs. Built by organizations who bring legal, field and organizing expertise, Ready to Stay aims to serve as a national resource by centralizing the creation and curation of legal resources, community education tools, capacity building training opportunities, and administrative advocacy that will increase coordination and resources for implementation efforts. Unless the infrastructure is there to link immigrants with programs to protect them and facilitate enrollment, whatever programs are adopted by the President or Congress will not achieve full impact without trusted partners across the country to implement policy change.
Ready to Stay Events
- Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness (LRIF) and FOIA Practitioner Training
- UnidosUS Annual Conference – Tuesday, July 27, 1 p.m. ET
- National Immigrant Integration Conference – Oct 3 – 6 – Las Vegas, Nev.
Ready to Stay is a national coalition of organizations working to build coordination for the effective implementation of programs that welcome immigrants and promote citizenship. The coalition aims to centralize the creation of legal resources, community education tools, capacity-building training opportunities, and advocacy research in order to support and streamline immigration advocacy efforts.