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National Immigrant Solidarity Network
4th National Grassroots Immigrant Strategy Conference
& Immigrant Rights Film Festival

April 10-12, 2009 UIC Student Center West
828 South Wolcott, Chicago, IL

Conference Hotline: (773)942-2268

Lists/Descriptions of Workshops

Submit Your Workshop Proposal | Conference Schedule

(As of April 1, 2009)

List Alphabetically


2009: State of the Immigrant Rights Struggle and CIR Legislation
By: Siu Hin Lee - National Immigrant Solidarity Network

Updated analysis on how Obama administration will impact the immigrant rights movement; immigrant raids; Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) Legislation; what’s the challenges and opportunities ahead forlabor and community activists to support the struggle.


By: Sergio Moreno - Union de Braceros

How to work in international issues in different languages.


Community of Advocates for Undocumented Student Education Organizing & Issues in Chicago
By: Nancy Serrano - CAUSE-Community of Advocates for Undocumented Student Education

CAUSE (Community of Advocates for Undocumented Student Education) is a grass roots organization dedicated to raising funds and awareness for undocumented students.  Join us to learn more about the current student/faculty/citizen organizing.  Listen to student organizing experience as well as current struggles of undocumented students in college.


Discrimination Against Muslims in The American Immigration Judicial System
By: Elizabeth Brotherton

The stereotyping has been disastrous for the millions of Muslim Americans and Muslim immigrants that call America home. My husband, Khalid Nethagani,an Indian/Muslim immigrant has experienced this negative stereotyping.


The DREAM Act: Undocumented students and how THEY are fighting for their rights
By: Mohammad A -

This workshop will present the DREAM Act from the standpoint of actual students who would benefit from the Act.  Undocumented students from across the nation - Mo (Michigan), Prerna (California), and Chicago - will speak about their own lives.  We will explain they youth activism going on and our hopes for the movement.


E-Activism Tools for Immigrant Rights Campaigns
By: Siu Hin Lee - National Immigrant Solidarity Network, Prerna Lal - The Sanctuary -

This is an introductory workshop on how labor activists can begin their e-Activism campaign for labor rights campaigns: a low-costs web page and on-line labor and social justice campaigns and activism. Topics and technologies such as: Independent Media, Internet radio, HTML webpage, MYSpace, on-line research, e-mail list and media outreach will be covered. We’ll highlight our latest developed tools: 

Presentation by immigrant youth activist on the promigrant blogosphere and social networking tools such as Facebook Causes and Twitter.


Education not militarization
By: Jesus Palafox - American Friends Service Committee

Let people know about the reality of the DREAM Act, a de facto military draft.


How to Start a Detention Center Visitation Program
By: David  Fraccaro - Sojourners Visitation Program with Detained Immigrants and Asylum Seekers

Sojourners Visitation Program with Detained Immigrants and Asylum Seekers out of the Riverside Church in NYC (the group that inspired the movie, "The Visitor")  has visited hundreds of detainees for ten years, and has just released a training manual for how to begin and sustain visitation programs in other regions of the country.   Requests from dozens of organizations from throughout the country have come regarding interest in visitation programs.  It would be great to have many of them gathered in one place for this important volunteer work to continue in other parts of the country.


Immigrant Detention 101
By: Silky Shah - Detention Watch Network

Detained immigrants are the fastest growing population in federal custody. This workshop will give an overview of the US immigration detention and deportation system and highlight the local and state detention landscape in Illinois.  The session will also highlight examples of individual and community responses, including recent efforts to pass legislation in Illinois allowing access for religious workers to visit detained immigrants.  Panelists will suggest how you can learn more about what’s happening in your community and how you might respond to the needs of detainees and their families.


Immigration under Venezuela, Haiti, Colombia
Jesus Rodriguez, Consul General of Venezuela
Eunice Escobar, Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America
Leonel Jean Baptiste, Haitian Congress to Fortify Haiti 

1. immigration policies of the Chavez government and how it relates to Latin American unity;
2. how Free Trade Agreement with Colombia will displace  thousands of Afro-Colombians and indigenous peoples
3. Haitian immigration to the US and the continued abuse of Haitians both in Haiti and in US


LGBTQs and Immigration: Key Issues Beyond Marriage
By: Yasmin  Nair - CLIA (Chicago LGBTQ Immigrant Alliance), Gender JUST (Justice United for Societal Transformattion)

This workshop will highlight the intersections between the struggle for comprehensive immigration reform and LGBTQ rights. In particular, we will consider how LGBTQ rights organising is integral to an immigration rights agenda that is based on dismantling and ending the exploitation of labor. This workshop will show that LGBTQ immigrants, especially undocumented LGBTQ immigrants, are doubly and even triply impacted when their gender and sexual identities fall through the cracks in a system that does not recognise their needs.


"Lost In Haiti" Short Film Showing & Discussion about Haitian American Issue
By: Gregory Jesus Luc - Bourgeoizie Filmz

Producer Gregory Jesus Luc will show his film documentary trailer, follow by discussion about Haitian American Issue.


Making Trade Fair, the Struggle for Justice
By: Cesar Sanchez - Casa Guatemala / Maya Essence

Maya Essence, a community led project that seeks to empower communities through socio-economic justice practices and principles. This workshop will highlight the work of Maya Essence and its partners in Chicago & Guatemala. Also, we will talk about what are cooperatives and their importance in the development of community led projects to counter the negative impacts of globalization and anti- immigration.


The Multi-issue Immigration Issue
By: Jorge Mujica - Justice Mission

Immigration is related to many other issues, from the war to education to labor to the economy. There are forces in all of this issues who can also work for immigration reform.


Organizing through the means of documentary filmmaking
By: Anka Karewicz - Video Chamba (program of Arise Chicago Worker Center)

Present techniques of independent documentary filmmaking. Demonstrate interviewing techniques to help the participant understand how the interview is conducted from the perspective of the camera person, the interviewer and the interviewee


Putting a Human Face on the issue of Immigration: Using Made in L.A. for change
By: Almudena Carracedo - Made in LA

Join the Director of Made In L.A. team for a workshop on how this Emmy winning film and related short videos can be used as a tool in your work. The film's Director Almudena Carracedo will be joined by leaders from Sweat Free Communities, an organization that has been using the film to build support and understanding of their work.


Lists of Caucus and Strategy Sections

- Youth/Student Caucus

- Women Caucus

- LGBTQ Caucus

- Working Class Caucus

- May Day 2009 Organizing Strategy Meeting

- Detention & Deportation Support Strategy Meeting

- Legislative Strategy Meeting

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