Opening Doors for New Americans since 1882
On Friday, August 26, 2016, the United States District Court for the Eastern District granted a preliminary injunction in favor of the plaintiffs in Khadidjah Issa et al. v. The School District of Lancaster. The case, brought by the Education Law Center and the ACLU of Pennsylvania on behalf of several refugee kids, argued that the Lancaster School District violated both State and Federal law by failing to enroll the children in a timely manner and failing to enroll them in an educational program appropriate to their educational needs.
The City of Philadelphia has become known as a “Sanctuary City” because the administration has developed a carefully crafted policy in which police focus on community policing and preventing crime instead of enforcing our civil immigration laws. HIAS Pennsylvania supports this policy.
When Emily applied to intern with HIAS Pennsylvania last spring, she only knew that HIAS Pennsylvania was a leading immigration non-profit in Philadelphia—and thus the perfect fit for her aspirations. But when she got the interview and told her mother, she was surprised to find out that she had a personal connection to HIAS Pennsylvania—HIAS Pennsylvania had helped her great-grandmother come to the US. A fact made even more real by when Emily found records of her great-grandmother's relationship to HIAS PA in her attic (see below).
During the convention weeks, as politicians and individuals staked their position on immigration, one story stood out—Karla Ortiz’s speech about her experience living with undocumented parents. Her story resonated with me because I have also lived in fear of deportation of my family. Just like Karla’s parents, my parents came to this country in search of the American Dream and a better life.
If you missed Philly's World Refugee Day Festival, take a look at CBS Philly's coverage of it:
Mustafa* knows two kinds of fear: the suffocating fear of dying or losing a loved one in a bomb blast, and the slow creeping fear of watching his youngest child slowly die before his eyes and being unable to do anything about it.
Mustafa lived a simple life. Every day he crossed a bridge to the local market where he sold ceramics. At night, he came home to his wife and three children.
On New Year's Eve, a donation was hand delivered to us. A woman at a local business had asked for donations from fellow employees at her place of work and raised over $500. But even more, she wrote us words that speak to the reason we do what we do:
Alhaji Saccoh did not feel like he had enough to do. He was working part-time, and though he ran a nonprofit supporting two schools in his home village in Sierra Leone, he still felt a sense of restlessness. So one day in 2010, he walked into a fire station and asked how he could help. It was that day that Saccoh became a volunteer firefighter at Collingdale 1 Fire House.