L.A. Welcomes Collective, in close coordination with City of L.A. and County of L.A., activate rapid response teams to receive 49 asylum seekers on seventh bus sent to the region.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 4, 2023
Contact: Alicia Vargas; email@example.com
LOS ANGELES, CA — The L.A. Welcomes Collective, a network of immigrant rights, immigration legal services providers, and faith organizations, in coordination with the City of Los Angeles and the County of Los Angeles, responded Friday to the morning arrival of 49 migrants sent from Brownsville, Texas, offering them urgent humanitarian support services, including food, clothing, and legal immigration orientations upon arrival and facilitating family reunions with loved ones residing in the region.
This arrival marks the seventh bus filled with asylum-seekers sent from Texas to Los Angeles. A total of 283 asylum-seekers have arrived in Los Angeles to date. The members of the LA Welcomes Collective are: Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice (CLUE-LA), Central American Resource Center-Los Angeles (CARECEN), Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA), Comunidades Indígenas en Liderazgo (CIELO), Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project, Haitian Bridge Alliance (HBA), and Immigrant Defenders Law Center (ImmDef).
The following statements can be attributed to each representative from the following members of the LA Welcomes Collective:
“Immigrant Defenders Law Center remains committed to responding to the needs of vulnerable people arriving in Los Angeles by providing legal information and support. We are proud to be a part of the network of organizations in Los Angeles that have consistently welcomed people with dignity while offering what we can to set them up for success as they integrate into our communities,” said Lindsay Toczylowski, Immigrant Defenders Law Center Executive Director.
"Los Angeles continues to open its heart and work collectively to give asylum seekers the refuge they deserve. Our work is to help them find protection and a better life in the U.S., their new home. With this they will leave behind the suffering and any use of their plight for political agendas,” said Angelica Salas, CHIRLA Executive Director.
“Our migrant brothers and sisters possess the same intrinsic dignity as any person. Many of them are fleeing persecution and are seeking asylum. They desire a better future for themselves and families, a life that will honor and respect their dignity. In the words of Pope Francis: ‘immigrants, if they are helped to integrate, are a blessing, a source of enrichment and new gift that encourages a society to grow.’ We once again welcome those arriving by bus today. The Archdiocese of Los Angeles will continue to collaborate and partner with the LA Welcome Collective to ensure our migrant brothers and sisters receive the necessary pastoral care and support,” said Michael P. Donaldson, Senior Director of the Office of Life, Justice & Peace for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
“At Esperanza, we will continue to do everything we can with our limited resources to support migrant asylum seekers arriving in Los Angeles. We want them to know that LA is a welcoming city, and that the Collective is united in its goal to provide support and guidance,” said Kimberley Plotnik, Program Director, Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project.
"More data must be collected about how many people from indigenous communities arrive in the US. There needs to be more information available in indigenous languages about asylum, funds, and other services. We must stop the language violence against indigenous migrant communities by guaranteeing access to interpretation. Having an interpreter is not a service, it’s a fundamental human right,” said Odilia Romero, Executive Director for Comunidades Indígenas en Liderazgo (CIELO).
“CLUE is honored to continue to welcome with dignity and compassion those who are fleeing horrific conditions and violence in search of protection and refuge. May the welcoming of the LA Welcome Collective for those arriving today be a big embrace of the humanity of each person, filled with love and compassion,” said Guillermo Torres, Director of Programming for Immigration Campaign, at CLUE-Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice.
“CARECEN-LA and the Los Angeles Welcomes Collective remains committed to welcoming migrants with dignity. Our limited capacities and resources do not deter us from continuing to uphold our values, standing in solidarity with our migrant brothers and sisters. We thank the communities and partners that echo these values in solidarity,” said Alexandra Morales, CARECEN-LA, Director of Organizing, Policy, and Advocacy
Immigrant Defenders Law Center (ImmDef) is a next-generation social justice law firm that defends our immigrant communities against injustices in the legal system. We envision a future where no immigrant will be forced to face immigration court alone. Our programs are a first step towards the long-term goal of providing universal representation to all immigrants facing deportation. ImmDef is now the largest non‐profit, pro bono provider of deportation defense in California with offices in Los Angeles, Adelanto, Riverside, Santa Ana, and San Diego.