Families Belong Together Toolkit

On June 30, thousands demonstrated in over 700 cities across the US... and so did we in over 30 cities worldwide as part of our international coalition.

But families remain separated. Zero Tolerance has not ended. Reports continue to surface of the Federal government's disastrous and abusive treatment of detained immigrants — and more actions are being planned for July 28 and onwards. We’ve updated this toolkit with resources and actions we can all continue taking globally.

Global Actions: July 28 and Onwards

Last month, a Federal judge ordered the government to reunite all the children and parents separated at the US–Mexico border by July 26. However, the government has already indicated they may not meet the deadline — in fact, they’re still struggling to identify the parents of 71 immigrant children who are alone in their custody.

Families Belong Together organizers in the US have marked Saturday, July 28 as their next day for demonstrations across the country. Their goals:

  • respond to the Trump administration’s (likely purposeful) foot-dragging and gross incompetence in fixing the humanitarian disaster they’ve created,
  • push THIS PETITION for Congress to create a task force to reunite all families that have been separated.

Here’s what we can do globally: HOLD AN EVENT!

On or around July 28 (it’ll be just as relevant before or after) you can hold an event and do any combination of the following:

Make it virtual

Whatever you decide to do, let the world see what you’re standing behind!

Whether it’s Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, use hashtags like these: #FamiliesBelongTogether #EndFamilyDetention #ReuniteFamiliesNow #EndFamilySeparation #EndZeroTolerance

And tag us with your photos or videos on Twitter (@TogetherIntl) and Instagram (@familiesbelongtogetherintl). You can also send to our Facebook page: Families Belong Together International and we’ll share them there. You can also tag any of the social media accounts of the members of our international coalition.

Education

Hold a teach-in or seminar about immigration. You can even retransmit this one being organized in Barcelona for July 30.

You can also screen documentaries like those on Remezcla's list, or show reports such as those made by Vox Borders.

Call Congress

Use this script to ask your senators to support the REUNITE Act, which would do what the petition is asking for. You can also use any of the scripts about zero tolerance created by 5calls.org or the Indivisible Guide.

This is also a great opportunity to teach people about calling Congress and getting them into the habit!

Fundraise

You can collect donations while selling something, offering services.. or while doing ANY of these activities! Browse this list and this list of organizations you can donate to.

Help out locally

Is there an organization offering help to newly-arrived immigrants in your area? You can use the occasion to get in contact and ask if they need any volunteers, and show some global solidarity!

Voter registration

This should be obvious by now: we need different people in office—and that means primaries, too! At this or any event you hold, make sure people are registered to vote and know how to request their absentee ballots! Use VoteFromAbroad.org to register and request ballots, and this resource to learn about candidates and registration deadlines.

More Actions & Resources

Weekly Actions

  • Lunchtime for Change is a set of actions published weekly by the Families Belong Together organizers. They include petitions, promoting petitions, calling Congress, and calling/writing to companies that are complicit in zero tolerance policy: all easily done at lunchtime on the US east coast — or whatever time it is wherever you are.
  • Women’s March Global’s action guide is also being maintained.

Call Congress

Follow the money

The dollar is the bottom line, and there's no such thing as a free lunch... All of these atrocities cost money to carry out, and far too many companies are willing to turn a profit off helping them do it..

  • CALL OUT COMPLICITY: Sleeping Giants (Twitter: @slpng_giants) and Grab your Wallet find out who they are and publicize their contact info so you can let them know what you think of their business.
  • DIVESTMENT: indigenous groups such as Mazaska Talks have led successful campaigns to pressure banks to withdraw their investments in fossil fuel projects directly affecting their communities. You can read here about how they did it.

Two of the same culprits — JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo — are financing the prison companies profiting from Zero Tolerance, namely CivicCorp and GEO Group. We have signed on to a multi-group divestment campaign and will be circulating our own mirror petition to add to the many they will be presenting. See the #FamiliesBelongTogether Corporate Accountability Toolkit here!

In the meantime — do you have an account with either of these banks, or is yours also complicit in Zero Tolerance? Call them and tell them you'll take your business elsewhere if they do!

Fundraising

No matter the type of event you're planning, there's always room for fundraising!

  • For starters, US organizers have started this GoFundMe for a Guatemalan family whose little girl was sexually abused (and then forced to sign a document stating that it was her responsibility to stay away from the abuser: story here).
  • Browse this list and this list of organizations you can donate to.
  • Read & share this article by a Zürich-based activist from the US about how vital donations are for these efforts.

Petitions to sign

(list still being compiled)

Education

How much abusive immigration policy is driven by ignorance? Do people really understand the causes, statistics, scope, effects, and even benefits of immigration? Combatting the disinformation could go a long way: there are many resources on the subject: here is just one example. Also worth checking out are Vox Borders and Remezcla's list of documentaries.

Merch

You can purchase t-shirts and more from the Families Belong Together US organizers.

Graphics

Graphics to print and use online.

Press Releases

Press release samples for demonstrations here.

About Families Belong Together - International

In order to keep the focus on this issue, we’ve decided to place the work of our international coalition under a single name and banner: Families Belong Together – International. We’re in touch with the FBT coordinators in the US, too.

Social media

Follow and share our profiles on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Some countries (like Spain and France) have also made groups for national-level organizing. If you’re an organizer, drop us a line so you can participate!

Messaging

Our intention is to follow the same guidelines proposed by organizers in the US. In a nutshell, it’s to keep MORAL and keep SIMPLE. Three themes for messaging:

  1. Cruelty: This policy is unconscionable, morally bankrupt, child abuse, mental torture for children and parents.
  2. Causation: Trump and Sessions are responsible for this policy and they can end it with a single phone call. They don't need legislation to end family separation: trying to pass the buck to Congress is a sideshow
  3. Cynicism: This is a cynical political strategy to mobilize the base. They are tearing these children away from their parents while sowing fear of immigrants as a ploy to win votes.

For more messaging guidelines: Dos and Don’ts messaging guide and the US organizers’ messaging guide for June 30.

International messaging

Migration is a global phenomenon, but so is the growing xenophobia and scapegoating of migrating people (as we’ve seen in reflected recent actions by not only the US but also the Italian and Hungarian governments). Organizers are encouraged to connect with local groups and causes, or at least include local and/or regional issues in their actions. We need to show our that concern is also global and not limited to when something inhumane is done in our places of origin.

See Barcelona mayor Ada Colau’s statement on the global connections regarding the issue of immigration.

Demands – We also share the same demands presented by organizers in the US, in response to the government’s false backtracking on its zero tolerance policy:

  • Reunite every single family that remains brutally torn apart — and prove it.
  • Permanently end the separation of children and families by Trump.
  • Immediately and permanently reversing the zero-tolerance policy, which is what created the present crisis all on its own.
  • Permanently end the indefinite detention of children and families.
  • Accountability for the abusers responsible for this horror

Social Media

FAMILIES BELONG TOGETHER – INTERNATIONAL Facebook page: Families Belong Together International Twitter: @TogetherIntl Instagram: @familiesbelongtogetherintl

INTERNATIONAL COALITION Tag these accounts from members of our international coalition who are active on social media about this issue (still being updated):

Twitter @DemsAbroadBCN @madridresist @WomensMarchMIL @DemsAbroadLyon @WM_Global @ActZurich @womensmarchbcn @DemsAbroadNZ @womensmarchnl ‏ @ResistanceItaly @womensmarchpar @PAGEofdemocracy @DemsToulouse

Facebook @madridresist @WomensMarchMilan @DemocratsAbroadLyon @womensmarchglobal @ActZurich @womensmarchbcn @demsabroadnz @WomensMarchNL @resistanceeventsitaly @EngageWithPAGE Democrats Abroad Toulouse

Instagram @madridresist @womensmarchmilan @democratsabroadlyon @womensmarchglobal @womensmarchbcn @womensmarchnl ‏ @womensmarchpar

US COALITION TWITTER ACCOUNTS Tag these accounts of organizers in the US: @familiesbelong @domesticworkers @UnitedWeDream @MomsRising @MamasConPoder @ACLU @MoveOn @wrcommission @raicestexas @conmijente @granniesrespond

HASHTAGS TO USE: #FamiliesBelongTogether #EndFamilyDetention #ReuniteEveryChild #EndFamilySeparation #EndZeroTolerance #DefundICE #AbolishICE #NoOneIsIlegal #Nadieesilegal