My name is Rachel Lerman and I’m a DJJ leader. As I’m sure most of you have heard, Trump released a revised version of the travel ban this week. Throughout these past few months, I often think of my grandparents and their experience coming to this country as immigrants: my grandmother came here in 1939 to escape Poland, and my grandfather survived Auschwitz and came here after the war. We must remember our shared stories and history - and take action to ensure that this country is a place where immigrants, refugees and Muslims are welcomed.
We are proud and privileged to live in a diverse state. Six percent of Michiganders are immigrants, with an undocumented community of over 100,000. We have the second largest Arab-American population in the country. We are among the top two states for resettlement of refugees, with over 2,000 Syrians joining our Michigan community in recent years.
Stosh Cotler, CEO of Bend the Arc Jewish Action, says: “Making decisions on who is welcome in our country based solely on their religion or national origin is fundamentally un-American. As Jews, we know what it’s like to be scapegoated and we will not be silent now.”
We must reject discrimination and hateful actions. We must hold each other accountable, and hold each other up. We must work to educate one another, and we must give each other the strength to continue to protest -- resisting bigotry and violence in all its forms.
DJJ recently formed a work group to confront this urgent issue. We will support the efforts of organizations who defend communities targeted by these harmful policies. We will ensure that when we are called upon, we will show up as Jews to protest hateful legislation and discrimination. And we will need your help.
Please take the pledge today to stand in solidarity with Immigrant, Arab & Muslim communities as Michigan Jews. With your support, we can reach our goal of 300 signatures in one week.
We cannot be silent. We must stand with Muslims and other marginalized communities in this country. We must call on Michigan Jews to be a part of the resistance against Trump’s policies.
Another step you can take right now: donate to Freedom House Detroit, the only organization providing comprehensive social services to refugees. On April 1, they will lose their HUD funding and they need our support to continue their critical work.
We can’t do this work without you. We need your time, talent, and yes, we need your financial support. Please consider helping us to expand our capacity at this critical moment by making a one-time gift here or becoming a monthly sustaining donor here.