More than 130 turn out for vigil to end concentration camps

Members of Interfaith Matters, Indivisible Mohawk Valley, 1199 SEIU Upstate and CNY Citizen Action gathered on Commercial Drive Friday night, July 12, for the local Lights for Liberty: A Vigil to End Human Concentration Camps.

The event drew more than 130 participants from across the Mohawk Valley.

In June, lawyers and doctors toured facilities along the southern border holding migrant children, many separated from their families. They found lack of basic nutrition and hygiene, serious violations of the law and asked a judge to order immediate inspections.

In New Hartford on Friday, those attending carried posters in protest of the inhumanities being committed by the U.S. in addressing refugees and immigration across the southern U.S. border.

They then lighted candles in a silent vigil for all of those held in U.S. detention camps.

“The conditions of the border camps are as bad if not worse than concentration camps.” said local organizer Debbie Salema Lindon. “These are men, women, children, families who are seeking refuge. They deserve to be treated better.”

The July 12 event was one of more than 700 events held around the nation and the world, covering five continents and bringing light to the darkness of the Trump administration’s horrific policies that violate basic human decency.

The local groups partner to support compassionate and caring resolutions to complex problems.

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Interfaith Matters, Indivisible Mohawk Valley, 1199 SEIU Upstate NY, and CNY Citizen Action partner to bring to light social injustices and to find solutions that reflect the shared value of honoring and protecting human rights.

Interfaith Matters is an inclusive community in dialogue, covenantally bound by values and ethics of differing religious and spiritual traditions, committed to peaceful and peace-filled activities, service, and relationships.

Indivisible Mohawk Valley is a group of concerned citizens who self-organize around events and projects that strengthen their bonds and community with one another while standing up peacefully and non-violently to the destructive, corrupt, and undemocratic ways of the current federal administration and its supporters in Congress.

1199 SEIU United Healthcare is the largest healthcare union in the United States. With a membership of 400,000 including retirees, its stated mission is to achieve quality healthcare, good jobs and social justice for all. 1999SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. They represent over 400,000 nurses and caregivers throughout Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Florida.

CNY Citizen Action. An affiliate group of Citizen Action of New York and founded in Central New York in 1997, CNY Citizen Action became an official chapter in 2018. Citizen Action is a grassroots membership organization that takes people power and turns it into electoral power.

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