Human dignity groups across rural Oregon have been organizing for safe and welcoming communities for decades, and while we’ve made great strides, there is still work to be done to make sure that all rural folks can thrive! You can read one story from Coos County of a local campaign for safe and welcoming communities here and below you’ll find opportunities to get involved in the statewide campaign to fully realize the Sanctuary Promise Act!
What is the Sanctuary Promise Act and how can I get involved?
After decades of rural communities organizing to build safe and welcoming communities for all, we won a huge victory in 2021 by passing the Sanctuary Promise Act through the Oregon legislature. This new law expands Oregon’s decades-old Sanctuary Law so that no government or law enforcement agency can assist federal immigration enforcement without a warrant from a judge.
Human dignity groups in more than 16 counties worked to make the Sanctuary Promise Act a reality by meeting with their sheriffs and police to find out about how they were getting asked to work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, connecting the dots across stories of how people were being detained, and more. Now that we have passed the Sanctuary Promise Act, it’s time for us to make sure it’s fully implemented!
Here are ways that you and your group can get involved:
- Sign up for updates from ROP to hear about what other human dignity groups around the state are doing to keep our communities safe and welcoming for all!
- Donate to ROP to support our work to advance human dignity and democracy for the long haul!
- Meet with Law Enforcement: Does your group want to schedule a meeting with local law enforcement to ask them about their policies, let them know you expect them to follow the new requirements, and/or share the potential for legal action if they do not? Check out this tool about meeting with local law enforcement! You can also print out this SPA Explainer that’s for local law enforcement to bring with you to the meeting.
- Get the Word Out: Do you want to make sure the rest of the community knows about the Sanctuary Promise Act and your local officials know you are paying attention?
- Submit letters to the editor to your local newspaper. Local officials definitely read local letters to the editor and take note of the issues folks are engaged in. Here is a guide for how to write a Letter to the Editor, along with a sample letter to get you started. The guide is also available in Spanish.
- Distribute Sanctuary Promise Hotline flyers: You can print out these hotline flyers in English and Spanish and put them around town to share information with your neighbors about the Sanctuary Promise Hotline, where they can report potential Sanctuary Promise Act violations. People impacted by violations can receive support (including up to $1,000) and be connected to other resources.
- Host a know-your-rights training: The Oregon Department of Justice can lead trainings on the Sanctuary Promise Act, and ROP is also working on a curriculum focused on reaching Mam community members who we’ve seen targeted at higher rates than other immigrant communities. If your group wants to host a training, let’s talk! Reach out to your local organizer or email Sidra at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Broadcast on Local Radio: Your local community radio station may be interested in covering how law enforcement compliance or noncompliance with the SPA impacts your community. Reach out to them to broadcast an interview with the sheriff, information about the hotline, or other SPA-related content. Specific tools coming soon! Are you a community radio station interested in this issue? Email Sidra at email@example.com if you’re interested in collaborating!
- Call your ROP organizer and let us know what you are working on, how it’s going, and what support you need. Did you meet with law enforcement? Send letters to the editor? Put out flyers? Are there other tools or more information you need to be successful? Reach out to your local organizer or email Sidra at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear from you!