Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin Advocate for Civil, Human, and Migrant Rights across Arizona
Local groups that advocate for civil, human and migrant rights have been holding organized vigil that honor migrants who have died and others who have gone missing while crossing the U.S- Mexico border.
Coalicion de Derechos Humanos, one of the groups that have been actively organizing vigils in honor of the dead and missing migrants held its 890th anniversary and formally organized vigil. The group has said that it will not hold any other organized vigil due to commitment complications.
For the last 17 years, Derechos Humanos has held weekly gatherings at El Tirado, which is regarded as a shrine for migrants. The local organization serves as a top critic of the brutal and inhumane policies of the U.S government towards immigration.
Derechos Humanos advocates for the Human and Civil rights of the migrants regardless of their immigration status. The vigil involves prayers, songs, and lighting of candles. Read more: Village Voice Media | Wikipedia
Most participants have remained faithful to the course and have been participating in the vigils for several years. Belinda Rhodeos, a Tuscon resident, is one of the active participants who have to take part in the vigil for years hoping that the issue of migrants will change for the better. Belinda notes that migrants are a crucial part of the society.
They are part of the community; therefore, people should strive to protect their rights. Robert Carney, a priest of the Diocese of Tuscon on his part, pointed out that this may be the last formally organized vigil, but according to him, it is never going to be the last vigil. Derechos Humanos has so far painted more than 3,000 crosses, which symbolize bodies and remains uncovered along the Arizona-Sonora border since the year 2000.
About Lacey and Larkin Foundation
These local groups have continued to receive backing from different sections of the society with several well-wishers donating their resources to aid these organizations in their quest to fight for migrants civil and human rights.
One such organization that has offered a generous contribution to local organizations championing the rights of migrants is the Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund. Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin, the co-founders of Phoenix New Times and Village Voice Media donated the settlement money arising out of their arbitrary arrest by Sheriff Joe Arpaio to help in funding the migrant rights groups throughout Arizona.
The compensation, which amounts to $3.75 million, was as a result of their arrest on October 18th, 2007 by the County Sheriff. Michael & Jim Larkin were hauled from their homes at the middle of the night and put behind bars for revealing the existence or grand jury trial. The trial wanted reporter’s notes on articles covering the County Sheriff.
What was more astonishing was grand jury subpoenas demands of the identity of the citizens who read New Times stories online involving the County Sheriff. The two journalists who had spent their careers asserting and championing their First Amendment rights filed a case against the County, and the United States Court of Appeals ruled in their favor.
The duo vowed to continue supporting the organizations that advocate for civil, human, and migrant rights throughout Arizona, including on La Linea fronteriza- the Mexican border.
Learn more about Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey: