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Palomas 2020/2021

In May 2019 our UU congregation began supporting the Deming NM shelter for asylum seekers on their way to sponsors. We were a collection site for our county. With those donations we packed food travel bags (GoBags) as well as sent clothing, medical supplies and food for the shelter. All of that ceased in fall 2019 when the border was “shut,” and the Remain in Mexico (MPP) was strictly enforced.

In June 2020 we reactivated our UU Social Justice work to support the migrant shelter, Tierra del Oro, in Palomas, Mexico, 2 hours south of Silver City. What started as a small shelter for asylum seekers waiting to head north, became a transit stop that ICE and the Border Patrol use to expel dozens of detainees every day. These guests at the shelter may only stay 1 or 2 days but most are in dire need of food, sleep and first aid before they decide where to go next. At our UU building we have a weekly collection of supplies for the shelter every Wednesday afternoon. These supplies are transported to Deming, NM and then sent across the border by officially sanctioned individuals.

In February 2021 we began, once again, to pack GoBags in anticipation of the Deming shelter re-opening for asylum seekers once Title 42 (preventing anyone from entering the US due to COVID 19) eases. We continue to pack at least 200 bags a week as well as continue to supply the shelter in Palomas. What we are able to do is dependent on donations from our wider community, both locally and nationally.

Our role will evolve as border policies evolve. You can read below the last three weekly posts with updated information on Palomas and Deming, as well as the current needs for the migrants and asylees. If you would like to personally receive these posts, contact Barbara Gabioud at bgabioud@gmail.com.

Additional note to our UU listserv: If you would like to help us on a collection Wednesday or be a driver to Deming, please let me know.  The generosity of our community will warm your heart. 

Note:  Driven by the hope for a better future, many migrants who are being expelled from the US will continue to try to re-enter, regardless of the dangers and hardships they face.

9/19/2021

I was hoping to have really good news to send this week but …not yet. So, instead, we can use the current immigration situation to portray three migrant classifications that are all in today's news. This is very simplistic, but hopefully helpful.

First, "asylum seekers", many in Palomas, waiting for a chance to seek asylum and pass their individual credible fear interviews as to why they cannot return to their country of origin. Secondly, “refugees", specifically the Afghans, who as an entire group are entering the US because of our withdrawal from their country and their affiliation with our military for the past 20 years. And thirdly, "Temporary Protected Status (TPS)", which was granted to 150,000 Haitians already in the US following the devastating 2010 earthquake and which was extended in May 2021. Current Haitian migrants in Del Rio do NOT qualify for TPS which is the justification the administration is using to undertake their deportation back to Haiti, an unstable and extremely dangerous country.

Of course, nothing is that clear cut. The groups overlap and are conjoined with Remain in Mexico and Title 42. Congress continues to stalemate and provides no cohesive immigration stance going forward. The Biden administration is on the defensive with no clear objective, angering large segments of his supporters.

The pictures below illustrate two of these groups. The children are among the asylum seekers in Palomas who got to enjoy the Mexican Independence Day celebration on September 16th. The second picture is of the luggage many of you generously contributed to our emergency call to aid the Afghan refugees in New Mexico.

This Wednesday, September 22nd, IS NOT a collection day. And since September has 5 Wednesdays, our next collection won’t be until October 6th. The shelter in Palomas could use a BLENDER if you have one and the “soon-to-be-Ranch” in Deming is looking to buy 2 used GOLF CARTS (message me privately about this).

The GoBags of food we pack include: CRACKER PACKS, 16 OZ BOTTLES OF WATER, WELCH’S FRUIT SNACKS, GRANOLA/BREAKFAST BARS, and cans (4.6 oz) of VIENNA SAUSAGES.

Medical needs: ALLERGY AND COLD MEDICINES, ROLLS OF GAUZE AND GAUZE PADS, POVIDONE IODINE SWABSTICKS, TYLENOL FOR CHILDREN, IBUPROFEN and INDIVIDUAL PACKETS OF ELECTROLYTES (Amazon and Walmart).

Additional Food: CUP-OF-NOODLES

Clothing: BABY CLOTHES NB-3T, and MEN’S JEANS, SHIRTS AND SHOES in small sizes are the most needed clothing items at this time.

Other supplies: USED/OLD CELL PHONES, TABLETS AND LAPTOPS, DISPOSABLE GLOVES, ADULT BACKPACKS TO CARRY FOOD AND PERSONAL BELONGINGS, LAUNDRY DETERGENT, DEODORANTS, DISPOSABLE RAZORS and FEMININE HYGIENE PRODUCTS.

We collect donations on the first and third Wednesdays of each month, 3:00-3:30, in the parking lot of the UUFSC building, 3845 N Swan (not our mailing address) in Silver City.

To contribute financially you may mail checks made out to UUFSC (Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Silver City) with Border in the memo line to UUFSC, PO Box 4034, Silver City, NM 88062. Thank you ~ Barbara


UUFSC Palomas photo

UUFSC Palomas photo

9/12/2021

Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of 9/11, as you know. The Department of Homeland Security was one of the results as well as the backlash against migrants and asylum seekers.

The shelter in Deming, as well as other NM shelters, will begin accepting guests! Ariana Saludares has announced that "Colores United is a breath away from "Rancho Mariposa" becoming a reality and are in negotiations for the property. If you are interested in Volunteering this week, we have open hours Tuesday-Friday at the Armory in Deming from 9am to 12pm. Please email volunteer@coloresunited.org for more information or text 505-573-4010 to sign up for a shift. We remind all interested in volunteering in any shelter operation capacity to register both with MRC https://volunteer.nmmrcserves.org/custom/1411/volunteer_registration and Volgistics https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?AP=1901472476. We will be developing a virtual transportation assistance hub to allow those unable to serve onsite the ability to still assist.”

I decided, this week, to include some of the more recent and happier photos I’ve received of the guests in the Palomas shelter. They have worked hard to create a family atmosphere especially for the children.

This Wednesday, September 15th, IS a collection day. And since September has 5 Wednesdays, our next collection won’t be until October 6th. FYI, items in RED are the most needed right now.

The GoBags of food we pack include: CRACKER PACKS, 16 OZ BOTTLES OF WATER, WELCH’S FRUIT SNACKS, GRANOLA/BREAKFAST BARS, and small cans (4.6 oz) of VIENNA SAUSAGES.

Medical needs: ALLERGY AND COLD MEDICINES, ROLLS OF GAUZE AND GAUZE PADS, POVIDONE IODINE SWABSTICKS, TYLENOL FOR CHILDREN, IBUPROFEN and INDIVIDUAL PACKETS OF ELECTROLYTES (Amazon and Walmart).

Additional Food: CUP-OF-NOODLES

Clothing: MEN’S JEANS, SHIRTS AND SHOES in small sizes are the most needed clothing items at this time.

Other supplies: DISPOSABLE GLOVES, ADULT BACKPACKS TO CARRY FOOD AND PERSONAL BELONGINGS, LAUNDRY DETERGENT, DISPOSABLE RAZORS and FEMININE HYGIENE PRODUCTS.

We collect donations on the first and third Wednesdays of each month, 3:00-3:30, at the UUFSC building, 3845 N Swan (not our mailing address) in Silver City. You can drive straight down on either side of our collection vehicles. We will get you unloaded and then you can drive out easily. If you are bringing any of the above GoBag items, please let the crew unloading your car know about them. We will put them in the building for packing rather than send to Deming to be transferred to Palomas.

To contribute financially you may mail checks made out to UUFSC (Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Silver City) with Border in the memo line to UUFSC, PO Box 4034, Silver City, NM 88062. Thank you ~ Barbara


UUFSC Palomas photo

UUFSC Palomas photo

UUFSC Palomas photo

9/5/2021

First of all, for those of you who were looking forward to the Bob Dylan tribute concert next weekend here in Silver City, it’s been cancelled. It was to be a fundraiser just like our concert in 2019 which kickstarted our GoBags project for the border (thanks to all who supported us then). But COVID rules…

Don’t you just love the photo below? The photographer, Alejandro Prieto, won Bird Photographer of the Year over 22,000 entries!

Not a lot of good border news this week on the MPP front. But a federal judge in San Diego ruled Thursday that the U.S. government’s practice of denying migrants a chance to apply for asylum on the Mexican border until space opens up to process claims is unconstitutional. U.S. District Judge Cynthia Bashant’s ruling has no immediate impact but could prevent the government from limiting entry for asylum-seekers because it says it lacks resources.

This Wednesday, September 8th, is NOT a collection day. But you can continue to shop for the collection on September 15th. The shelter in Palomas does need a new MICROWAVE. If you have one to donate please let me know. We could even try to arrange pickup for it before the 15th.

The GoBags of food we pack include: CRACKER PACKS, 16 OZ BOTTLES OF WATER, WELCH’S FRUIT SNACKS, GRANOLA/BREAKFAST BARS, and small cans (4.6 oz) of VIENNA SAUSAGES.

Medical needs: ROLLS OF GAUZE AND GAUZE PADS, POVIDONE IODINE SWABSTICKS, TYLENOL, IBUPROFEN and INDIVIDUAL PACKETS OF ELECTROLYTES (Amazon and Walmart).

Additional Food: CUP-OF-NOODLES.

Clothing: MEN’S JEANS, SHIRTS AND SHOES in small sizes are the most needed clothing items at this time.

Other supplies: ADULT BACKPACKS TO CARRY FOOD AND PERSONAL BELONGINGS, LAUNDRY DETERGENT, DISPOSABLE RAZORS and FEMININE HYGIENE PRODUCTS.

We collect donations on the first and third Wednesdays of each month, 3:00-3:30, in the parking lot of the UUFSC building, 3845 N Swan (not our mailing address) in Silver City.

To contribute financially you may mail checks made out to UUFSC (Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Silver City) with Border in the memo line to UUFSC, PO Box 4034, Silver City, NM 88062. Thank you ~ Barbara


UUFSC Palomas photo



 https://www.borderreport.com/hot-topics/immigration/border-towns-struggle-with-the-thousands-of-migrants-immediately-deported-under-cdc-order/


 

 





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