IAUSA Irish Apostolate

Update on the Catholic Campaign for Immigration Reform  

Issue: # 99  December   2013
In This Issue
JFI Updates
Fast for Families Campaign
White House Christmas Event
Knock, Knock, It's Immigration at Your Door
Christmas Greetings
Quick Links 


Current Articles 


Making Sense of the Senate and House's Visions of Immigration Reform


Center for American Progress 




Dems: Immigration reform 'cannot wait'



Other Links 


Join Our List
Important Updates from the 
Justice for Immigrants Campaign

USCCB National Migration Week January 5-11- Please support the work of the USCCB Justice for Immigrants (JFI) Campaign during  this week when we hold especially close all immigrants and people on the move in search of a better life.


Resources for National Migration Week 2014 (Jan. 5-11) are available here.




1/7- JFI national electronic postcard day- email an electronic postcard from the JFI website to ask your US House of Representative member to support humane Comprehensive Immigration Reform



1/8- JFI national call in day- call your US House of Representative member to support humane Comprehensive Immigration Reform.  DETAILED INFORMATION WILL BE SENT IN THE NEAR FUTURE.



1/9- JFI National Social Media Day- post on your Facebook and twitter accounts messages supporting Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Fast for Families Campaign

Last week, immigration advocates and faith leaders ended their month-long  Fast for Families on the National Mall. More than 200 people came to the tent to fast, and thousands more came to bear witness to the need for immigration reform legislation. More than 10,000 - including members of Congress-fasted across the country. Members of Congress, as well as President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, visited fasters in the tent. President Obama said their strong commitment would help pressure lawmakers to act-and that passing an immigration bill was more a matter of "when than if." 

Although the
House of Representatives adjourned for the year without voting on immigration reform legislation, advocates are not giving up or slowing down. Aiding their efforts is compelling evidence that passing immigration legislation makes solid economic and political sense.  The human toll has been devastating as well: 162,000 people have been deported since June, breaking apart families and lives built in America.  Furthermore, our country is losing $37 million per day in revenue that would be gained if the 11.7 million undocumented immigrants were out of the shadows and on a path to earned citizenship. 



White House Christmas Event

Billy and Anne Lawless and Ciaran and Orlaith Staunton were a few of the attendees at a recent White House Christmas Celebration.  (I am sure they had a few suggestions for President Obama on how to get CIR next year!)









Knock, Knock, It's Immigration at Your Door!


DO'S and DON'TS if Immigration comes knocking at your door or job?

  1. Be Respectful: Refer to the Immigration Officer as "Sir" or "Madam" or "Officer."  Though the Immigration Officer may not treat you with respect, you should show respect because the decisions regarding your detention, issuance of bond, or release initially rest in their hands.
  2. Get the name of the Immigration Officer: ask the officer for his/her business card.  If he/she is not willing to give you a business card, then casually ask for his/her name.  Make a mental note or write down their name.
  3. Ask  the Immigration Officer where you are being taken: this is very important because in most states, Immigration has more than one detention center.  As an immigration lawyer, I find it difficult to locate my clients when the family members cannot tell me where my client is being held.  Sometimes, it takes 2-3 hours to call every detention center in the state to locate my client.  Immigration is not always very helpful.
  4. While being processed-ask to use the phone: the first place Immigration will take you is to an office where you will be fingerprinted and photograph.  They will also ask you questions about your status and family member and create a "Record of Proceeding".  Also, they will serve you with a "Notice to Appear," which initiates the removal/deportation process.  Politely ask the Immigration officer if you can use the phone to call your family member to let them know you are safe.
  5. Inform family member where you are & name of Immigration Officer: Once you get to speak with your family member, give them the name of the detention center you will be taken to and the name of the Immigration officer.  This information will be helpful to the immigration attorney hired to represent you.
  6. Do Not Sign any Documents: The Immigration Officer will present numerous documents to you for your signature.  DO NOT SIGN ANY DOCUMENTS.  Simply write, "Refuse to Sign" in the signature block.  There have been numerous cases where immigrants sign documents not knowing that they are waiving a judicial hearing and choosing expedited removal/deportation.  Once an attorney is retained to represent you, the attorney will review the documents and advise you of the legal ramifications of each document.  
 Additional information can be found here.


Christmas Greetings

But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people;  for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord."  


Luke 2:10-11


The Irish Apostolate USA wishes you tidings
of peace, joy, and love for a blessed Christmas.  



Fr. Brendan McBride, President

Fr. Michael Leonard

Fr. John McCarthy

Joanna Joyce

Celine Kennelly

Fr. John Madigan

Geri Garvey

Join the Justice for Immigrants Campaign

The Justice for Immigrants Campaign continues to build its grassroots support for comprehensive immigration reform.  
If you want to be notified of immigration legislation updates , NOW is the time to join the JFI Action Alert list.  Sign up at: 
The Irish Apostolate USA is the umbrella organization for the Irish Immigration Pastoral and Outreach Centers in the United States, under the direction of the Irish Episcopal Council for Emigrants. 

Please visit our website for more information: 
Geri Garvey, Administrator
Irish Apostolate USA
Phone/Fax:  301-384-3375     Email: administrator@usairish.org