Today officially began our week of service with LUPE. We spent the morning learning about what the organization does, the facts and fictions of immigration, and policy changes taking place in the US with regards to immigration and where it looks like we are headed in the future. Our education also included a quick trip to “the wall,” which surprisingly wasn’t actually on the border of Mexico and the US.
LUPE is an organization the gives services in both community organization and individual growth and support. As we saw yesterday, they are instrumental in creating public awareness around the key issues such as working conditions and immigration in the communities and in local, state, and federal governments. They also provide tax services, English lessons, and many other services to those in the surrounding communities.
The most eye-opening part of the day was our discussion of immigration. We began with a quick fact or fiction exercise where we had to guess whether certain statements were true or not. I found this particularly interesting as I found that many of my prior understandings of immigration and undocumented workers was not entirely true. We talked about how difficult the current process to legally immigrate the the US is and the effect this has on how people decide to come to the country.
Regardless of why or how people make their way into the US, it is impossible to deny that the culture of the country is changing. While discussing the current legislation being discussed in the government today we talked about the role the growing Latino population is having on the outcome of elections. It was undeniably a big support in helping President Obama win a second term in office and will most definitely shape the face of politics in the future. There are sure to be some changes taking place, which will be most necessary, as this issue progresses and the country is once again shaped by the people who choose to call it home.