As we celebrate Father’s Day on June 16, too many American families will have an empty seat at the table. Church World Service and its partners are working together to raise the voices of these families and to call Americans to action through the online Father’s Day campaign: #DontDeportMyDad.
Every day, the U.S. government deports an average of 1,100 people. After 1.4 million deportations in the last four years, including parents of more than 200,000 U.S. citizen children, we see the clear need for immigration reform that creates a path to citizenship for our undocumented community members.
As advocates join for vigils and actions across the U.S. this Father’s Day weekend, DontDeportMyDad.org will be an online voice and presence to tell the stories of these daughters and sons who are forced to grow up without their father. In addition, the social media campaign will help people to share their stories and to take action.
“Through #DontDeportMyDad, we want to convey the urgency for immigration reform by telling the stories of families separated by our broken immigration system,” said Erol Kekic, Director of CWS’s Immigration and Refugee Program. “The time is now for Congress to fix our broken immigration system that is deporting fathers – men who have committed no crime but do not have the right immigration paperwork – from their families.”
This Father’s Day presents a unique opportunity for young activists, family advocates, refugee resettlement offices,and people of faith, because compassionate immigration reform has never been more achievable than now in the U.S. Congress.
Advocates are calling for the Senate to pass the bipartisan immigration reform bill, S.744, that would create a pathway to citizenship for our undocumented community members, promote family unity and increase protections for refugees. While the bill is being considered, advocates urge the U.S. government to stop deporting undocumented individuals who meet the eligibility criteria for registered provision immigrant status in the current Senate legislation.
The DontDeportMyDad.org site will be launched Friday, June 14. Visitors to the site will be able to read stories of deportation, learn how to take action, and share their own story online.
CWS is working on the campaign with advocacy partners Fair Immigration Reform Movement, the Campaign for Community Change, Keeping Families Together, and the American Baptist Home Mission Society.
Where: Online at DontDeportMyDad.org and at action/vigil sites across the U.S.
(a list will be online at DontDeportMyDad.org)
When: Friday, June 14 to Tuesday, June 18
What To Do: Share the message of Don’t Deport My Dad with your friends on Twitter and Facebook. Link to the site and use the hash tag #DontDeportMyDad.
Tweet the Don’t Deport My Dad site and message @ your Senators as we call for compassionate immigration reform.
@SenatorName Too many families are split apart. This Fathers Day support #ImmigrationReform #DontDeportMyDad http://dontdeportmydad.org
@SenatorName Dont let another Father’s Day pass without comprehensive #ImmigrationReform #DontDeportMyDad http://dontdeportmydad.org
@SenatorName This Father’s Day, support comprehensive #ImmigrationReform and keep families together #DontDeportMyDad http://dontdeportmydad.org