There are just over six weeks before the 1 Day Without Us national day of action in solidarity with migrants in the UK on 17 February. Events are already being planned across the country, but for those of you who aren’t sure about what to do, here are some suggestions:
Keep it simple if you’re just getting started. Hold a demonstration or a rally with music/speakers/migrant testimonials in the city centre/your university campus/ or a public place. Link arms round a public building to show unity and solidarity. Make sure you photograph it! Invite public figures and local politicians to attend.
Hold a party/communal meal/bake off/musical event with migrants in your communities
Set up ‘human libraries‘ in public places, where members of the public can ‘take out’ a migrant speaker and ask them questions
Banner drops proclaiming the message ‘ Proud to be a migrant/Proud to stand with migrants.’ Alternatively, you might choose to bring messages to the day, depending on your organisational or individual priorities. Celebrating migrants and migration does not preclude protest and there are lots of things to protest against: The impact of immigration controls on migrant workers; the ‘hostile environment’; the failure to guarantee EU citizens’ rights; restrictions on health care to migrants. What do you want the country to know about the value that migrants bring to your communities? What migrant voices and perspectives are being left out of the public debate? What would you like to highlight and draw attention to? Why are you proud to be a migrant? Why are you proud to stand with migrants?
Photograph yourselves and your migrant colleagues holding 1 Day Without Us placards or ‘ Proud to be a migrant/Proud to stand with migrants.’
Use social media to raise the profile of migrants in particular sectors. Right now it is more critical than ever that the contribution of migrants to the NHS is acknowledged and celebrated
We’re celebrating migrants past and present. Put on an event that remembers/celebrates the history of your community/nationality
Whatever you do, publicise it. We’re trying to change the national conversation. Help change the conversation in your town/city/community. Let the local media know. Get on the radio. Even if you can’t get out on that day, you can still take a selfie and post it on Twitter/FB/Instagram with a message attached
If you can’t do anything on 17 February, you could do something in the week leading up to it. If you’re a teacher or a parent, why not celebrate migration in your school. Stand up against bullying of migrant children being told to ‘go back where they came from.’
You may have your own suggestions, and we welcome them all. But whatever you do, try to time your event so that it coincides with the TWO O’CLOCK UNIFYING ACTION. At two o’clock we want you to photograph yourselves and post your pictures everywhere. Let’s make our message heard up and down the country:
PROUD TO BE A MIGRANT
PROUD TO STAND WITH MIGRANTS
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