How the sanctuary movement in the US is advocating for immigration reform

Across the US, a number of Lutheran churches have formed a sanctuary movement to support undocumented migrants – and their work has doubled due to Covid.

In California, Pastor Nelson Rabel Gonzalez has been visiting his city’s mainly Mexican migrant population that work in the grape and cherry fields. He says that lots of them have not been provided with masks and hand sanitiser, but need to continue to work as they are essential workers – and that those who have been let go because of the pandemic are struggling to pay rent.

And in Ohio, Pastor Sally Padgett has been looking after Miriam, a mother from Honduras who is at risk of deportation. When they both caught Covid, they were terrified that if Miriam’s health deteriorated that they may have to go to hospital – meaning Miriam would have to leave the safety of the church and risk being captured by Immigration and Customs Enforcement Officers.

Produced by Sophia Smith Galer