Washington, D.C. – On the second annual Immigrant Day of Resilience, immigrant youth from United We Dream commissioned four high-profile digital artwork pieces to honor and bring awareness to families and communities impacted by anti-immigrant violence. The commissioned artists – all of whom identify as immigrant, indigenous, or first-generation –include Iliana Galvez, Kat Cadena, Mimi Moffie, and Amy Morales. The artwork, which is on display on the artists’ Instagram pages, evokes the discipline of hope, community care, and strength of Black, brown, and immigrant communities who are fighting to protect one another against immense trauma and violence at the hands of immigration enforcement agencies like ICE, CBP, and police.
Last year, United We Dream commissioned a mural by Palestinian artist Shirien Damra in Washington’s D.C’s third ward, a predominantly Black and brown neighborhood. The mural unveiling was celebrated with a ceremonial resolution led by Councilmember Janeese Lewis George and enacted by D.C. City Council affirming the first-ever Immigrant Day of Resilience.
Juanita Monsalve, Senior Marketing and Creative Director of United We Dream, said:
“At the start of the Biden administration, Black, brown, and immigrant communities were made promises that, to this day, have yet to be fulfilled. Since President Biden took office, we have witnessed and felt the pain of approximately 1.7 million people deported and expelled under Title 42, a Trump-era policy the Biden administration recklessly expanded. We saw Black and brown immigrants denied COVID vaccines because of their status and thousands more languishing in ICE detention facilities. We felt the anxiety building in our bodies as we heard the news that no new DACA applications would be accepted and that the Biden administration had failed to reach a breakthrough on citizenship for millions. To this day, Black, brown and immigrant lives remain on the line.
Yet, through all of this pain and trauma, immigrant communities have created spaces to honor our stories and experiences –however painful they may be– as ways to build the ties and cultural power needed to create lasting change. Those closest to the pain of our country’s immigration system are also closest to the breakthroughs in policy and in culture. We come together on Immigrant Day of Resilience to heal and unite Black, brown and immigrant communities who face ongoing racialized violence at the hands of immigration enforcement agencies, including ICE, CBP, and local police. When we heal together, we are reminded of the collective strength needed to build a world where we can all live safely, free from fear, with dignity and access to our human rights.”