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National Grassroots Immigrant Strategy Conference
Friday - Sunday July 28-30, 2006
Ward Circle Building, American University
Washington, DC


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Respect Us! National Immigrant Education Campaign
A national community, youth, peace and justice movements in solidarity with immigrant workers and support immigrant rights!

Respect Us! Respect Our Work!


I. What is Respect Us Movement?
1) A multi-ethnic national support network of campus youth activists; immigrant, community and peace & justice groups for supporting long-term grassroots community-based immigrant solidarity campaigns.

2) A multi-year popular educational program to aim at the campus youth and community about the importance of immigrant rights is human rights, respect the work of immigrant workers, and highlight their contributions to the society, and link immigrant solidarity movement is an unrepeatable part of the anti-war/global justice movements.

II. Key strategies include
1) Visit and support the immigrant communities the activist doesn’t usually go and help, such as: American rural area, southern states, the “red” states, bible belt.

2) Linking global and local issues, organize community dialogue, and offer volunteer work/logistic supports to the local immigrant workers organizations.

3) Create basic, simple messages to advertise our policies. Using arts, education materials, talking points, film showing and community forum as medium, to educate and recruit people who are not familiar to the issues, help them overcome their racism and ignorance, to our side.

4) Formulate a simple and fun training program to build leaderships for the campaign, so they can carry their work locally and help them create their local affinity groups for sustainable movement.

5) Organize community “fact finding tour” “alternative summer camp” to bring youth and community activists to visit the immigrant communities and support their work.

6) Building useful day-to-day skills/experiences for activists who want to overcome complex cultural dynamics and language barriers, when they are trying to work with immigrant workers communities.

III. Main Messages
Respect Us! Respect Our Work!

IV. How This Will Help Us to Build A Better World?
There's a direct link between when U.S. attack other on countries, and the attacks on our immigrant community.

That's no secrets that domestically; "War Against Terror" is in fact oppressions against immigrants and Muslims.

The activists and organizers in this country have a particular responsibility to point out the links between Katrina's impact, immigrant rights, civil liberties, labor rights and the U.S. war in Iraq. Understanding the connections between our individual conditions of life and the lives of people everywhere in the world allows us to come together and organize across all borders. We need to make the connections between: wars in Africa, South America, Asia, Iraq, Palestine and Korea, and sweatshops in Asia as well as in Los Angeles and in New York; international arms sales and the WTO, FTAA, NAFTA & CAFTA with AIDS, hunger, our reproductive rights, child labor and child soldiers; multinational corporations and economic exploitation with racism, anti-homophobia and poverty at home--then we can win the struggle!

V. Major Constituencies to this Campaign
Our main focus groups include:
- Immigrant day-labor centers
- Community-based immigrant solidarity groups

Our main allies include:
- Peace and justice groups
- Student & youth organizations
- Interfaith communities
- Labor organizations

Immigrant Tents at Campign Democracy, Washington DC (September, 2006)

From: Cindy Sheehan, Co-Founder Gold Star Families for Peace

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

On Labor Day, September 4, 2006, the day before Congress is expected to return to Washington following summer recess, I plan to move Camp Casey to Washington, D.C., to create a larger camp right in the seat of power, a camp focused not only on ending the war but also on righting injustices here at home and on holding accountable the administration and Congress.

We're tentatively calling the camp Camp Democracy. We're obtaining permits for the Ellipse, where we expect to be best able to camp overnight. This will not be a one-day march or rally. Instead it will last for weeks, at least, and will include tents where participating organizations provide activist activities, trainings, workshops, and entertainment.

Topics focused on in various tents and on various days or weeks will include:

War/ Peace
The Constitution/ Accountability/ Censure/ Impeachment
Poverty/ Katrina/ Immigration/ Labor
Environment/ Health Care/ Education

We are reaching out to immigrants rights groups to coordinate with their activities and include them in this camp. We are doing the same with our friends who are planning a march from New Orleans to Washington. We are also committed to helping to promote the Declaration of Peace, a campaign which calls for civil disobedience beginning on September 21.

Several organizations have already committed to helping with this camp. Various celebrities will be available to help promote it. We plan to announce it and to create a website about it, but first we would like to have as large a coalition as possible committed to making it happen.

I would like to invite Immigrant Solidarity to join in making that commitment. By agreeing to be a part of this effort, you are agreeing to assist in promoting the camp and in providing activities and resources in a tent at the camp. You also are agreeing to have a representative join a planning committee that will pull this camp together over the coming months.

Can you join this effort for the sake of peace, democracy, and the rule of law?

In Peace,
Cindy Sheehan


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