Every year thousands of migrants struggle in America, being isolated and ostracised for being foreign. It would be bad enough if this just applied to those who came across the border illegally seeking a better life, but even those who have gone through the legal channels to be here find themselves facing the same difficulties and discrimination. Read more: Village Voice Media | Wikepida and Jim Larkin | Twitter
The source of these threats can be surprising and more than a little disheartening, from their employers to those people ostensibly charged with protecting their rights and keeping the peace, law enforcement. Due to these threats against migrant Americans, groups have arisen to help support them and protect them as they try to integrate themselves into a country that promised hope and opportunity.
Champion Organisations In The Fight For Migrant Rights
Migrant Rights International
Migrants Rights International is an important organisation that is an alliance comprised of associations focused on the religious, labour, and civil rights of migrants all over the world. This group functions at all levels from local to international and fights the good fight for the respect and protection of migrants all over the world, including their families.
Their fight drives them to ensure that the voices of migrants are heard at all levels of policy-making. They’ve been involved in important events focused on Migrant Rights, including the Day for General Discussion on Undocumented Migrant Workers, and the Global Campaign for the Ratification of the UN Migrant Workers Convention.
Global Workers Justice Alliance
The GWJA was established to handle a crisis that was largely being left largely ignored by other organisations. Cathleen Caron set out to ensure that abused migrant workers weren’t being prevented from accessing the justice system while they went home to their families. Learn more about Jim Larkin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jim-larkin-8a2a4213a
This campaign was set off by her discovering that 2000 farm workers were never able to collect on the wages that were owed t them because they had returned to Guatemala from their work in Florida. From there she went on to fight human trafficking in East Timor and realised that portable justice was something dearly needed. Thus was formed the Global Workers Justice Alliance and its unyielding fight against injustice.
Lacey & Larkin Frontera Fund
It’s a common theme that some event precipitated the creation of a fund or organisation fighting for migrant rights. In the case of the Frontera Fund, it was the strong-armed treatment received by Mike Lacey and Jim Larkin when they used their company Village Voice Media to report on the misdeeds of the local sheriff.
Like something out of a government conspiracy, they were removed from their homes by force and thrown into two unmarked vehicles. The local sheriff Arpaio had been engaged in anti-Mexican rhetoric in Arizona and had been called before the Grand Jury. Lacey and Larkin wasted no time in taking Arpaio to court for violation of their First Amendment Rights and an abuse of power.
The $3.7 million settlement they won was immediately turned to creating the Frontera Fund. Since then the Frontera Fund has focused on promoting migrant rights and freedom of speech all along the Mexican border in Arizona.