La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles

La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles

La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles es una organización sin fines de lucro basada en la fe que organiza a los inmigrantes procedentes de congregaciones predominantemente latinos en estado de Minnesota para construir el poder para cambiar el sistema de inmigración y de las estructuras políticas y económicas detrás de él.

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This weekend Asamblea leaders gathered in both Minneapolis and St. Cloud, MN for a 24-hour fast, in solidarity with “We Belong Together Women’s Fast for Families.” Asamblea de Derechos Civiles’ (hereafter “Asamblea”) fast, part of a month-long, cross-country action, is meant to draw attention to our unjust and oppressive immigration system, pressuring congressional decision-makers to pass a just comprehensive immigration reform bill and urging President Obama to halt all deportations (thus, keeping our families together).

It also served as a space for our community to gather to celebrate our faith during this Lenten season, to continue building our organization’ power, and to engage in spiritual reflection on the struggles that have happened and will happen. It was a space to continue building a shared commitment to the work we must continue to do.

Xenia Torres, an active member with Asamblea and a member of the Santo Rosario congregation, says that she fasted because, “While the path is difficult and the struggle is tough, we fast and we do this work, because we are fighting for something better, for our families, our friends, and ourselves.” Miguel Zuniga, another faster and a member of St. Alphonsus Church in Brooklyn Park, echoed Torres’ words.

Asamblea has spent the last several years working for Emancipation for all immigrant communities. A just comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship is just one piece of that vision for Emancipation, but it is the beginning of a better world for immigrant communities. This week, on the anniversary of Cesar Chavez’ birthday, Asamblea celebrates its eighth anniversary as an organization. Here is to the next eight years.

Asamblea fasted in conjunction with the Gamaliel network of affiliates.

Check out the photos above and the video link below for a video playlist from this past weekend’s 24-hour “Fast for Families.

“It was a Fast for nonviolence and a call to sacrifice. Our struggle is not easy. Those who oppose our cause are rich and powerful and they have many allies in high places. We are poor…But we have something the rich do not own. We have our own bodies and spirits and the justice of our cause as our weapons”(Cesar Chavez, 1968, following the end of a 21-day fast).

Credit to for the photo. 

Credit to for the photo. 

20 March 2014

Minnesota immigrant leaders will participate in a 24-hour fast on March 22nd in both Minneapolis and St. Cloud, in solidarity with national “We Belong Together” fasters.

"We Belong Together" is a month-long, cross-country action. Its purpose is to continue pressuring decision-makers to pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill and to halt all deportations. More information can be found here.

Asamblea de Derechos Civiles (“Assembly for Civil Rights”) is fasting in conjunction with the Gamaliel network, a national organizing network of non-partisan faith-based organizations.

Fasters with Asamblea will be gathered March 22nd-March 23rd, 11AM-11AM, at Holy Rosary Church in Minneapolis and 12PM-12PM in Centro Hispano in Waite Park.

For media inquiries, questions, or comments, please contact Antonia Alvarez at 651-207-9260 or Cirien Saadeh at 952-426-2429 or


This past February 26, 2014, Asamblea leaders and organizers had the opportunity to stand front row at President Obama’s speech on transit and jobs at the Union Depot in St. Paul, Minnesota. Attending the event provided a unique opportunity to speak directly to the President after his speech about the need to stop deportations and secure citizenship for all.

Co-Founder and Asamblea leader Antonia Alvarez, as well as other Asamblea leaders, urged President Obama to stop deportations and support a pathway to citizenship.  “Many of us want you to be our Abraham Lincoln who frees us” said Antonia to President Obama, “for the emancipation of all our undocumented community members.”

Patty Keeling, an Asamblea leader and arrestee at November’s civil disobedience outside of the Office of Representative John Kline, told President Obama that a pathway to citizenship must happen now for the sake of families, children, and all communities impacted by this country’s unjust immigration system.

Citizenship, transit and jobs are vital to winning our struggle for freedom.  We are actively involved in organizing for fair and just access to transit and opportunity for Latinos across the Twin Cities, because we don’t want to become second class citizens.  Full citizenship means access to good jobs, higher education, and civic participation. Emancipation means ending deportations, and overcoming isolation and the fear of displacement that our immigrant communities face.

Check out the link below for video from Asamblea leaders at Wednesday’s presidential address and the images above for photos from that event.

Asamblea leaders gather to meet with new Archbishop of St. Cloud

Just over a week ago, leaders of Asamblea de Derechos Civiles sat down for coffee with the new Archbishop of St. Cloud, Donald Kettler. Eleven Asamblea leaders met with Bishop Kettler as part of our work for comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship.  

We were grateful for the opportunity to begin developing a relationship with the bishop and to introduce him to our work in the region and beyond.  As a faith based organization working in Latino congregations across the state, we want to work closely with our church leadership. As an affiliate of the Gamaliel Network, we are connected to national efforts to develop community leaders within faith communities to advance social justice.  

Asamblea was heartened by Bishop Kettler’s response to the meeting. He stated that he supported comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship and was concerned about the impact of our broken immigration system on families and children. Bishop Kettler also said that he was interested in building a relationship with the Latino community in the archdiocese with and through Asamblea. Bishop Kettler agreed to join Asamblea leaders for Cafe con Pan Dulce meetings with the Latino community and recommended that the Mayor of St. Cloud also join the communities for those meetings.

Asamblea has organized actively in the St. Cloud area. Our leaders have organized monthly prayer vigil outside the Stearns County Jail and Detention Center. We have also organized for manufactured homeowners rights, hosted a bilingual Congressional Candidate Forum, registered voters and have organized to bring the mobile Mexican Consulate to the region on multiple occasions.

If we ever needed a reminder about why do the work we do, La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles’ 2014 annual retreat served us well. A local family joined us to share their story of injustice, separated from their mother who disappeared almost a year ago crossing the US-Mexico border, at the same time that we were short one of our leaders who had fallen ill.

If there was a theme to this year’s work, it might be “We are strong. We are united. We will not give up. The struggle continues until all our free.”

2013 was a very important year for the struggle and the work for Emancipation. As an organization, our numbers grew and we began settling down roots with a new office and staff. In the fight for Emancipation, on all fronts, we also took many steps forward.

In the fight for a just path to citizenship  our numbers continued to grow in their own leadership,  several trips to Washington, DC. and across the Midwest to visit with congressional offices; forums and community meetings; as well as over a dozen actions, including an extraordinary act of civil disobedience outside of the office of Representative John Kline. We also organized around the 2013 Minneapolis elections and a need for transit equity around the Cedar Ave. BRT and the Southwest and Bottineau transit development plans.  

The work continues in 2014. Leaders of La Asamblea met in mid-January to evaluate the past years work, to continue with the task of relationship-building, and to plan and prepare for the remainder of 2014. On thing is clear: Asamblea members know that the work for Emancipation will not be easy but that it will continue. While we continue the fight, pressuring the House of Representatives to pass HR-15, we are also gearing up for an massive get-out-the-Latino-vote effort, as well as continued work for transit equity in the Latino communities we serve.

                                       —Cirien Saadeh 

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Location: State Capitol, Room 125
Time: 4:00pm
As the 2013 congressional session comes to a close, Latino community leaders will gather Friday, December 13th at 4:00pm to respond to the failure of the US House of Representatives in passing comprehensive immigration reform. 
Despite the efforts of thousands of individuals across the country, including elected officials, the US House of Representatives was incapable of bringing HR-15 to the floor for a vote. On Friday, members and allies of Asamblea de Derechos Civiles (Asamblea), including faith, political, and community leaders, will gather to respond to that failure and announce their plans in the coming year to turn Minnesota into an “Immigration Reform State.” 
As part of this campaign, Asamblea has committed itself to raising the voice of Latino communities across the state, bringing the issue of immigration reform, as well as other community issues, to the doors of Minnesota’s decision-makers and elected officials. 
During Friday’s press conference, Asamblea members and allies will gather to hear the stories of those who would be most impacted by comprehensive immigration reform and share their plans for the upcoming year. 
Press are invited and welcome to attend. 
For more information, questions, or to speak to a community leader about their experience with our broken immigration system, please contact us at 
La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles is a statewide, faith-based non-profit organization which organizes immigrants from predominantly Latino congregations to build power for changes in the immigration system and the underlying political and economic structures behind it. 


Good morning !
As you may know, today is Give To The Max Day in Minnesota. I would like to ask you to please, make a donation to the work that Asamblea has done through out the years. 
This year we have made a lot of work!
  Retreat in Chicago (we took 7 people from Minnesota)
 (2) Cesar Chavez day followed by prayer vilages in in the Senators and Congresspeople offices
  Went to the Senators office t
 (7) trip to Washington, D.C. where we visited our 2 Senators and 8 Congresspeople, We also took part of the large rally that happened there. (15 people traveled there
  (10) Took part of the rally that happened outside of the Hennepin Government Center 
  (20) We started our 40 day-40 night Prayer Vigil on Lake St in Minneapolis. we made over 3000 phones calls to the MN Congresspeople and Senators. We were able to have a meeting with Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, and we had meetings with the staff members from the offices of Congressmen John Kline and Erik Paulsen   
(1) We marched to push the immigration reform and against Wells Fargo. Followed by a public forum with Rep. Keith Ellison
(5) Immigration reform forum with Senator Al Franken 
(10) had a prayer vigil at Senator’s Amy Klobuchar  and Rep. Keith Ellison
(1) closing of our 40 day-40 night prayer vigil and we had a prayer vigil in Rep Erk Paulsen’s office (along SEIU)
(10-17) Retreat with Gamaliel in Washington, D.C. We visited the MN Congresspeople offices. We had a meeting in John Boehner’s office. We had prayer vigils in Rep. John Kline and Erik Paulsen’s office. And we met with Rep. Betty McCollum and Rep. Erik Paulsen
  We started a signature campaign for Rep. John Kline and Rep. Erik Paulsen 
 (15)celebrated the 1st year anniversary of the DACA program by delivering half-cakes to Rep John Kline and Rep. Erik Paulsen  
 (19-23) A Dream For All bus tour.  (traveled trought out the Mid-West with 45 people people to visit offices of congresspeople to push the immigration reform 
  (25) Immigration public forum with Congressman Keith Ellison and Luis Gutierrez
(5) We were able to mobilize 9 buses to move people to come to the march in Downtown Minneapolis.
(6-9) Trip to Washington, D.C. along with members of SEIU. We were able to support Rep. Keith Ellison and Javier Morillo along other 200 people  who did the Civil Disobedience in D.C.  
(19) Consulado Movil de Mexico in St Joseph Church, Waite Park MN
(27) Latino mayoral candidate forum. 6 Minneapolis candidates for City Mayor came to our forum 
(4) Civil Disobedience outside of Rep. John Kline’s office. 10 people were arrested 
every 3rd Saturday of every month we have prayer vigils in St Cloud
There is more work in our agenda, and we won’t be able to do it without your support. Please, I encourage you to go donate to Asamblea today! Just click on the link, and the steps are very simple. It has a $10 minimum donation, 
And I just want to say THANK YOU for all of your support and work you have done with us! 

November 4, 2013

10 were arrested b/c of civil disobedience as they called on Rep. Kline to support CIR and pressure Rep. Boehner to bring HR-15 to the floor b/c #thetimeisnow!

       Last Sunday, October 27, 2013, La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles hosted a Latino-focused mayoral debate which concentrated on issues important to the Latino community, including immigration, transit, and police relationships. The debate was hosted at Sagrado Corazon de Jesus in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Speaking at the debate included Cam Winton, Betsy Hodges, Don Samuels, Mark Andrew, Bob Fine, and Dan Cohen. The debate was conducted in Spanish with the candidate’s answering in English, before being translated. 

       Check out the photos above and links below for more information. Also follow this link for notes on the debate.