Sanctuary in the Streets
The Rapid Response Team of Western Mass
What is SiS?
Sanctuary in the Streets is a network of 1,200+ people who are building the infrastructure to stop state violence against working people, including immigrants and people of color, as well as to organize a powerful working class movement. We are launching an emergency hotline to respond to workplace abuse, raids and deportations, and hate crimes.
Now is the time to come together and build an infrastructure of love and power, starting right here at home in the Pioneer Valley.
What is our strategy?
SiS combines a defensive and offensive strategy.
Defensive strategy: We mobilize to provide immediate support to individuals and families through free legal assistance and mutual aid (such as food, ride shares, childcare, etc.). This support builds trust and solidarity and creates resourceful ways for people to better meet their basic needs.
Offensive strategy: We must confront the root causes of injustice: capitalism, white supremacy, imperialism, patriarchy, and climate change. To dismantle the institutions that exploit and oppress us, we must build a powerful working class movement that tackles the multiple forms of oppression that workers face. For example, undocumented workers are disproportionately impacted by wage theft. Their bosses threaten to deport them when they speak out against exploitation and sexual harassment. This is just one example of how bosses profit from racism, sexism, and the legal status of undocumented people. For these reasons, SiS mobilizes to support the demands of workers and immigrants. We do this work through collective and direct action.
What will be asked of you as a member of Sanctuary In The Streets?
You will receive emergency emails and texts that notify you of peaceful public actions called in response to the immediate needs of immigrants and low-wage workers in difficult situations.
We imagine that SiS will be called upon to bear public witness to active deportations, to hold quick-response public rallies against acts of discrimination and labor exploitation, and to respond to injustice in ways that we cannot yet know.
We will need your help in publicizing our 24-hour Hotline once it is ready, through which we receive reports of deportations and labor abuses.
We also offer regular training opportunities, to ensure that all actions taken by SiS members are unified and advance the rights of workers and immigrants.
What is the structure of Sanctuary in the Streets?
SiS divides up work through committees. All the committees every two weeks at our general assembly meeting. Each committee has two representatives who serve on the Steering committee, a body that makes long-term plans in consultation with the various Workers’ Committees of the PVWC.
SiS’s education committee and many other volunteers have produced videos, publications, trainings and all kinds of infographics. Check out some of these resources below: